A French court has given a green light to the transfer of the trial of Rwanda’s most wanted genocide financier and fugitive Felicien Kabuga, to the international criminal tribunal in Arusha Tanzania.
The decision was taken this Wednesday by the Cassation court in France, reaffirming an earlier decision that was taken on the suspect but rejected by his defense team arguing that Kabuga was not physically fit to stand trial in Tanzania due to his alleged poor health condition.
Kabuga was arrested in Paris in May 2020, ending a manhunt that lasted more than two decades of evading justice for his crimes committed during the 1994 genocide against Tutsi.
The 87 year old suspect was indicted in 1997 on seven criminal counts including genocide.
He is accused of assassination as a crime against humanity, extermination as a crime against humanity, rape as a crime against humanity, persecutions on political, racial or religious grounds as crimes against humanity in addition to various war crimes
On June 3, the Paris Court of Appeal, responsible for examining the validity of the arrest warrant issued by the Mechanism for International Courts (MTPI), ordered Kabuga’s surrender to international justice under the International Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) now the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (IRMCT) based in Tanzania.
Kabuga had appealed this earlier court decision of his transfer to Arusha but the court upheld the defense he is expected to use his health conditions to convince court to be tried in France and not be sent to the International Criminal Tribunal court in Arusha, Tanzania for trial.