Detained Rwandan opposition leader Ingabire exposed to torture
Detained Rwandan opposition politician Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza is ‘exposed to cruel and awful treatment. Ingabire has been day and night in handcuffs since she was arrested on October 14th.’ This is according to an October 16th communiqué from her party FDU-Inkingi.
Eric Kayiranga, the Rwanda Police spokesperson has however denied the allegations of the FDU communiqué. Speaking to the Daily Monitor on phone from Kigali on Sunday, Mr. Kayiranga said Ingabire was in good health and was being treated humanely.
He added that Ingabire spoke to her lawyer before she was questioned by the police. “Anyone who wants to visit her is free to do so as long as they follow police procedures and guidelines,” he told this newspaper. The communiqué was sent to a number of international media houses, foreign diplomatic missions and to an unspecified number of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs).
FDU said its information on Ingabire’s detention status was based on ‘reliable insider information.’ It also called on other governments ‘to convince General Paul Kagame that political opponents are not evils, beasts or terrorists.’ “According to reliable information from Kicukiro police detention, Ms. Victoire Ingabire has been day and night in handcuffs since her arrest on 14th October 2010. The jailers have kept away all the items supplied: mattress, clothes,” the communiqué reads in part.
“The lawyer, who saw her today, found a person submitted to dire and humiliating conditions. The Red Cross staff was denied access this morning and advised to confirm later this afternoon the decision of the chief of the police detention facility in this respect,” it continues.
The police said Ingabire was arrested after been implicated in an investigation into the activities of Major Vital Uwumuremyi, a former commander in the FDLR Hutu militia group. “It is not the culture of the Rwanda Police to mistreat or intimidate detainees. We deny FDU’s allegations categorically,” Mr. Kayiranga insisted.
FDU however said Ingabire is being victimised because of her ‘open condemnation of the Kigali administration and in particular President Kagame. “The only difference is that we (FDU-Inkingi) believe in democracy, justice and peace, he (Kagame) does not,” the communiqué said.