Tag Archives: Hutu genocide

UN List of Suspected Congolese Civil War Criminals to Stay Secret

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights declared in Kinshasa on Thursday that his office’s data base on suspected perpetrators of serious crimes committed in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) from 1993 to 2003 will remain secret. He said this was because measures are lacking to protect victims and witnesses, but a senior UN official who wishes to remain anonymous claimed African countries are exerting pressure to stop the list being published.

In October 2010, the Office of the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights published its “Mapping” report on serious crimes committed in the DRC between March 1993 and June 2003. This 550-page document covers mainly the two Congo wars in which, between 1996 and 2003, as many as nine countries – Rwanda, Uganda, Burundi, Angola, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Chad, Libya and Sudan – were involved. It documents 617 serious incidents over a decade, including massacres and sexual violence, committed mainly by the Congolese army, foreign armies and rebel groups.

This report has fed a secret data base of suspected perpetrators of abuses, most of which could be categorized as war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. Congolese and international NGOs like Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have frequently called for justice. Pressure is mounting. On March 8, International Women’s Day, an open letter entitled “No to impunity for rapes and massacres in the DRC” was submitted to Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Massacres of Rwandan Hutu refugees in the DRC by Paul Kagame’s army

This letter signed by nearly 200 Congolese associations – whose October 20 petition gathered 450 signatures – calls for the “embargo” on the database to be lifted. Those supporting the call include gynaecologist Denis Mukwege, famous for his work treating thousands of rape victims in the eastern DRC, which has been unstable for 20 years. “Fighting impunity is a way to protect the women we look after, but also to bring peace,” he told JusticeInfo. “Wherever people have tried to make peace without justice, we can see that it has failed!

Caution

But the UN deems it too dangerous to reveal everything. “This case in particular must always be handled extremely cautiously,” Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein told the press on Thursday in Kinshasa. He said his office has “very sensitive information on a number of different investigations”. “Before disclosing the information to any judicial body investigating the alleged crimes, we need to make sure that there is adequate protection for witnesses and victims,” he continued. “If there is no framework for protection of victims and witnesses, we need to exercise caution.

Dr Mukwege understands these arguments but stresses that “perpetrators of these crimes must not be allowed to escape justice”. “We still need to launch a process fairly quickly to have a judicial body that can try these crimes – war crimes and crimes against humanity – that have been committed in the DRC,” he insists. His remarks come as people are still waiting for the DRC to set up special mixed courts with national and international judges and prosecutors to try the crimes committed in the 1990s in the former Belgian colony.

For the UN, keeping the database secret is also meant to prevent any interference with the administration of justice. In a response to the associations’ open letter, Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein says that unveiling the list could “contribute to the destruction of evidence and compromise future actions and initiatives, in particular trials aimed at holding the perpetrators of serious crimes accountable”. At UN headquarters in New-York, a senior official says that the deadlock is also the result of strong pressure from States.

So who is exerting pressure? According to him, African countries at the UN are “mobilizing to ensure that nothing is revealed `before being sure of the facts`, but in order to be sure of the facts, States need to launch investigations”. They are not in a hurry to do so. “Some States seem to think that [committing serious crimes] is part of war and that it’s a Western speciality to get upset about it,” he says. “Other States do not want their army’s image tarnished by these accusations. So it’s partly nationalism but also the desire to keep power, since they rely on the army to remain in government.”

Pressure from the DRC, Chad and Rwanda

He says States including the DRC, Chad and Rwanda “have all exerted pressure in different ways” to ensure that the list remains secret, including “threats” to withdraw troops deployed in UN peacekeeping missions or to “create administrative difficulties for UN agencies”. In this context and given the high stakes, he thinks it is unlikely the database will be published. “The issue is very sensitive,” he says. “It’s closely guarded, so unless there is a leak or a `UN Snowden`, it is unlikely the list will be revealed.”

Dr Mukwege regrets this pressure. “If we let it go on, it’s a way of saying also that someone else, another army, another organization can commit crimes and then use blackmail!” he says. “I do not think you can have a pretext for war crimes, crimes against humanity and crimes of genocide. There is no pretext. The day must come when the people who have committed these crimes in the DRC are brought to justice. That is the only way, the way that has been used across the world when war crimes and crimes against humanity have been committed. The DRC should not be an exception.

The database is nevertheless used in the wings. According to Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein’s letter, it has allowed “some prosecutions to be initiated” at the International Criminal Court (ICC), at foreign courts that can act under universal jurisdiction and Congolese courts such as the Military High Court. “But,” says the UN human rights chief, “these efforts at various levels are insufficient, and so we will persist in our work, notably through regular exchanges with the Congolese authorities.”

Source : justiceinfo.net


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Reconnaissance du crime de génocide contre la population Hutu.

Déclaration de reconnaissance du crime de génocide contre la population Hutu:

Nous, universitaires, experts, chercheurs, survivants, défenseurs des droits de l’homme, défenseurs des libertés civiles et de la justice sociale, responsables religieux,

A la suite de l’initiative de recherche de la GCRHR sur les crimes commis par l’Armée Patriotique Rwandaise (APR) au Rwanda, puis en République Démocratique du Congo (ancien Zaïre) par l’intermédiaire de son allié congolais, l’Alliance des Forces démocratiques pour la libération du Congo-Zaïre (AFDL), contre des membres du groupe ethnique hutu,
Sur base de notre propre évaluation indépendante d’experts de toutes les informations fiables disponibles, des recherches antérieures et des faits sur le sujet des massacre à grande échelle des Hutu par rapport à la convention de génocide,

Après avoir examiné la définition officielle du crime de génocide par la Convention de Génocide de 1948 des Nations Unies, qui définit le génocide comme l’un quelconque des actes ci-après, commis dans l’intention de détruire, ou tout ou en partie, un groupe national, ethnique, racial ou religieux, comme tel :

a) Meurtre de membres du groupe ;
b) Atteinte grave à l’intégrité physique ou mentale de membres du groupe;
c) Soumission intentionnelle du groupe à des conditions d’existence devant entraîner sa destruction physique totale ou partielle;
d) Mesures visant à entraver les naissances au sein du groupe;
e) Transfert forcé d’enfants du groupe à un autre groupe,

Après avoir soigneusement et minutieusement comparé toutes les informations et faits fiables, annexés à la présente résolution, concernant l’assassinat de membres du groupe ethnique hutu du Rwanda et de l’ancien Zaïre aux actes susmentionnés dans la définition faisant autorité du génocide, en particulier les actes a, b et c,

Notant que, d’après les informations et les faits disponibles, les massacres de la population de l’ethnie hutu ont été perpétrés sur base d’un plan presque identique, conçu pour tuer autant de victimes que possible, quels que soient leur sexe, leur âge ou leur nationalité,

Sachant que les rapports des experts des Nations unies sur les massacres de Hutu dans l’ex-Zaïre concluaient que les meurtres avaient révélé un certain nombre d’éléments inculpatoires les qualifiant de crime de génocide,

Notant qu’après le rapport de l’ONU sur la cartographie, l’ONU a recommandé de prendre de nouvelles mesures pour prévenir, enquêter, faire cesser et punir les crimes décrits dans son propre rapport afin de s’acquitter de ses obligations en vertu de la convention sur le génocide,

Par la présente, nous déclarons et reconnaissons comme CRIME DE GÉNOCIDE les massacres des centaines de milliers de personnes hutu rwandaises au Rwanda et de réfugiés hutu rwandais, de réfugiés hutu burundais et de citoyens hutu congolais en RDC du fait de leur appartenance au groupe ethnique hutu et sans distinction d’âge, de sexe ou de nationalité, par l’Armée Patriotique Rwandaise et son allié congolais, le groupe rebelle de l’Alliance des Forces Démocratiques pour la Libération du Congo-Zaïre
(AFDL).

Nous appelons la communauté internationale à s’acquitter de ses obligations en vertu de la convention sur le génocide et à agir collectivement pour traduire en justice les auteurs de ce crime de génocide.

Global Campaign for Rwandans Human Rights (GCRHR)
TERRAM PACIS
JAMBO asbl
AMAHORIWACU
Association ESPOIR
FONDATION IBUKABOSE RENGERABOSE


Source: Hutugenocide.org