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Posts Tagged ‘Nkunda’

AFP, 22 May 2009

KIGALI (AFP) — A Rwandan high court has rejected a bid by the wife of Congolese rebel leader Laurent Nkunda to release him, a rights group said Friday.

The High Court of Rwanda said on Thursday that Elisee Nkunda’s appeal “did not respect the law” and ordered her to pay legal costs, the League for Human Rights in the Great Lakes Region (LDGL) reported on its website.

Elisee Nkunda’s lawyer said earlier this month she had filed legal papers demanding for her husband’s release, after he was arrested by Rwandan forces on January 22 and held in a secret location.

The former general’s wife had launched an appeal to the High Court after a Rwandan tribunal had earlier dismissed her case.

One of the lawyers for Nkunda, who had led the Tutsi rebel group the National Congress for the Defence of the People (CNDP), Richard Rwihandagaza vowed Thursday to track down the person responsible for his client’s arrest.

Nkunda’s arrest was a dramatic turnaround, with Rwanda accused only weeks earlier by Democratic Republic of Congo of backing the cashiered Congolese general.

Nkunda had claimed to be protecting local Tutsis from Rwandan rebels from the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR), some of whom participated in the 1994 genocide in neighbouring Rwanda.

He accused Kinshasa and pro-government Mai Mai militia of backing the Rwandan rebels, while the Congolese authorities in turn accused Kigali of backing Nkunda.

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BBC News, 07 May 2009

MPs in the Democratic Republic of Congo have passed a law granting amnesty to militias in the east of the country.

It is the culmination of various deals to bring peace to the North Kivu and South Kivu provinces, a BBC correspondent in Kinshasa says.

It will include “acts of war” committed since 2003 but does not offer amnesty to those accused of war crimes such as rebel leader Laurent Nkunda.

Gen Nkunda remains in detention in Rwanda since his arrest in January.

DR Congo has applied for his extradition.

A Tutsi like Rwanda’s leaders, Gen Nkunda had guarded Rwanda’s western flank against attacks ethnic Rwandan Hutu rebels – the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) – some of whose leaders have been linked to the 1994 Rwandan genocide.

Government spokesman Lambert Mende told the BBC the amnesty would only to apply to Congolese militia and would not cover crimes committed by foreign rebel groups.

Read more.

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