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Tanzania-Rwanda: Sagahutu, convict of genocide arrested heading to Burundi

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Tanzanian immigration officers said on Friday they had arrested a former convict of the recently-disbanded International Criminal Tribunal of Rwanda (ICTR), African News reports.

Ally Dady, the Kagera Regional Immigration Officer, said they arrested Innocent Sagahutu in Ngara district while he was attempting to cross into Burundi.

Sagahutu, who was a captain of the Rwandan army before the 1994 genocide, was being interrogated by the Immigration officers in Bukoba, the capital town of Kagera region.

Dady said the former Rwandan army officer tried to cross into Burundi without valid papers, which led to his arrest.

The immigration officer said Sagahutu had completed a 15-year jail term for his role in the massacre in Rwanda in which more than one million people were killed.

After serving his sentence, Sagahutu could not immediately find a country that would have hosted him, and he needed special clearance to travel out of Arusha in northern Tanzania.

Dady said Sagahutu did not possess the required documents that could have enabled him to travel out of Arusha or elsewhere.

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However, Sagahutu claimed he had all papers allowing him free movement,  but immigration officers at Ngara could not read them well, the reason why he was detained there for 11 days.

He added that the documents have the clearance from the UN offices in Tanzania, noting that he was travelling to Burundi to see his relatives.

Sagahutu added that in the recent past the same clearance permits have seen him travelling to Mozambique and Switzerland “without any problem or causing harm to anybody.”

Sagahutu was among 10 Rwandan nationals who were yet to find countries to host them, after serving their jail sentences for their role in the Rwanda genocide against Tutsi in 1994, or after being acquitted. Most of them were living in a special detention facility of the UN in Arusha, as they don’t will to come back to Rwanda.

These in special detention include among others: Justin Mugenzi founder and president of Liberal Party (later ideological sect, as Power), Andre Ntagerura who was Minister of transport at Habyarimana and genocidal regime.

Last year, Casimir Bizimungu, Health Minister and later of Foreign Affairs left the detention to Ghana. He went with Sylvain Nsabimana former Butare prefet.

Jean Baptiste Karegeya

 

 

 

 

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