Biggest terrorism trial opens in Rwanda

Dozen of alleged members of Rwanda's militia groups from Eastern DR Congo are set to face justice in the East…

Dozen of alleged members of Rwanda’s militia groups from Eastern DR Congo are set to face justice in the East African country’s biggest terror crime trial, a judicial source confirmed to APA Wednesday in Kigali.The 37 suspects linked to several terror attacks carried out in November 2019 in Northern Rwanda belong to RUD Urunana, a faction of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) that has allied with Rwanda National Congress (RNC) to form an outfit called ‘P5’.

The FDLR are remnants of the perpetrators of the 1994 Genocide against Tutsi in Rwanda.

They are now part of the larger P5 network led by a renegade senior officer of the Rwandan army Kayumba Nyamwasa coalition of the Rwanda National Congress (RNC) and other terrorist groups to destabilize Rwanda.

Some of the suspects were captured during the attack in Northern Rwanda, while others were apprehended by UN peacekeepers and Congolese military during operations against armed groups operating in the country.]

During the first hearing, the military prosecution charges all the defendants various crimes, ranging from joining an illegal armed group and forming a criminal group to committing acts of terror or participating in them.

Other charges include accessory to committing murder, partnering in armed robbery and looting, having relations with a foreign government with an intention to wage war against Rwanda, and conspiring against the current government or attempting to change it, by use of war.

In addition, the military prosecution explained that the attacks in Northern Rwanda were part of a wider plan by anti-Rwandan elements against the government which targeted carrying out incursions in various parts of the country to incite terror among the population.

“Fifteen innocent people were killed during the attacks, and 14 were injured. The intention was to kill citizens. Those that survived, it was only by God’s mercy, but the plan was to have them all killed,” the military prosecutor told the court.

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