Rwanda

  1. Who is the Rwandan businessman killed in Mozambique?

    Revocant Karemangingo was a lieutenant serving in Rwanda's army in 1994
    Image caption: Karemagingo was gunned down in Mozambique on Monday

    Revocant Karemangingo, the businessman who was gunned down in Mozambique on Monday, was a lieutenant serving in Rwanda's army that was ousted in 1994.

    He fled to Mozambique when Paul Kagame's Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) took over power.

    Karemangingo settled in Maputo as a refugee and became a prominent businessman in pharmaceuticals.

    While in Mozambique, he's believed to have clandestinely been involved in politics in Rwanda.

    However the head of the Rwandan refugees association in Mozambique, Cleophas Habiyaremye, denies this, saying that Karemangingo was just a refugee doing his business for a living.

    Karemangingo was a suspect in the assassination of Louis Baziga the former leader of the pro-Rwandan government Diaspora Association in Mozambique, who was shot dead in Maputo in August 2019.

    However, Mr Habiyaremye told the BBC that Mr Karemangingo had been cleared by courts on the suspected role in Baziga's killing.

  2. UK urged to block new Rwandan envoy

    Johnston Busingye
    Image caption: Johnston Busingye is a former justice minister in Rwanda

    The British foreign secretary, Dominic Raab, has been urged to block the appointment of Rwanda's new high commissioner to London.

    An American human rights group, the Lantos Foundation, says Johnston Busingye was involved in the detention of a prominent critic of the Rwandan government.

    Paul Rusesabagina - who was portrayed in the film Hotel Rwanda - was tricked into returning to the country from exile last year and now faces terrorism charges.

    Mr Busingye, until recently the justice minister, has admitted the government paid the person who carried out the deception.

    The Rwandan government insists Mr Rusesabagina’s arrest complied with international law.

    Read more here.

  3. Rwandan businessman gunned down in Mozambique

    Jose Tembe

    BBC News, Maputo

    Revocant Karemangingo
    Image caption: Revocant Karemangingo was shot dead metres from his home

    A Rwandan businessman has been shot dead in Matola municipality, a few kilometres outside the Mozambican capital, Maputo.

    Revocant Karemangingo was shot about 50m (164ft) from his residence in the Liberdade neighbourhood on Monday afternoon.

    He was reportedly confronted by gunmen on three vehicles who intercepted his car before they fired a hail of bullets at him.

    The killers are so far not known, much less the reasons for the crime that shocked the neighbourhood and the Rwandan community in Mozambique.

    The police were at the scene for forensic work and the body was taken to a provincial hospital.

    Some Rwandans have told reporters that the deceased was among people who were being targeted because of their opposition to the current government in their home country.

    The Association of Rwandan Refugees in Mozambique said Karemangingo was a refugee doing pharmaceutical business and a victim of persecution by President Paul Kagame's government.

    The Rwandan community has asked the Mozambican government to provide more protection.

    In 2019, another Rwandan, Louis Baziga, was shot dead in a similar style in a Maputo suburb after gunmen intercepted his car. He was a known supporter of the Rwandan government.

    The Rwandan government has been accused in the past of carrying out targeted killings to dissidents out of the country - claims which it has vehemently denied.

    More on this topic:

  4. Detained Rwandan opposition leader on hunger strike - lawyer

    Samba Cyuzuzo

    BBC Great Lakes

    Rwanda opposition leader Christopher Kayumba
    Image caption: Christopher Kayumba says the rape charges against him are "politically motivated"

    A Rwandan opposition leader has gone on hunger strike after being arrested by police, his lawyer says.

    Christopher Kayumba, the leader of the Rwandese Platform for Democracy (RPD), was arrested on Thursday on rape charges, the Rwanda Investigation Bureau said.

    Mr Kayumba has previously called the allegations “politically motivated”, arguing that they surfaced a day after he launched his party in March.

    The media consultant and university lecturer was questioned on the charges in March and was summoned again last Thursday and arrested.

    His lawyer, Ntirenganya Seif Jean Bosco, says Mr Kayumba has taken a decision to go on hunger strike while in police custody “so that his right to bail is respected”.

    Two days before his arrest, Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame had called for the justice system to "be tough", especially on rape and gender-based violence.

    Mr Ntirenganya told the BBC that a day before the arrest, Mr Kayumba told him that “people were sent to warn him to get off politics or otherwise he would be in trouble”.

    This year Mr Kayumba has been criticising government policies on education, restrictions over Covid, the economy, and the deployment of troops to Mozambique to fight militant Islamists.

    “I am worried about his health now that he is on hunger strike. That is a personal decision he took for his right to bail to be respected,” Mr Ntirenganya said..

    While launching his party in March, Mr Kayumba said it would focus on “uprooting Rwanda from poverty, building lasting democracy and ending injustice”.

  5. Rwandan opposition figure held over rape allegations

    Christopher Kayumba
    Image caption: Christopher Kayumba is the leader of RPD party

    Rwandan opposition figure and university lecturer Christopher Kayumba has been detained over rape allegations.

    Mr Kayumba had honoured a summons from the investigating bureau on Thursday.

    The bureau said it had closed investigations and handed him over for prosecution.

    The leader of the Rwandan Platform for Democracy (RPD) was accused of rape just days after he launched his party.

    He denied the allegations saying they were aimed at tarnishing his image and that of his party.

  6. Rwanda not using French money for Mozambique operation - Kagame

    Jose Tembe

    BBC News, Maputo

    Rwandan soldiers
    Image caption: Rwandan soldiers have fought alongside Mozambican troops against insurgents in the north of Mozambique

    Rwanda's President Paul Kagame says the country is fully funding its military operation in Mozambique and has denied being financed by France or its oil company TotalEnergies.

    last month, Rwanda soldiers backed Mozambican troops in their fight against Islamist militants in the north of the country.

    “We have decent resources and we are happy to share. There is no-one financing us,” President Kagame said in an interview with the Rwandan Broadcasting Agency.

    He was answering a question on concerns over the possible financing by Total Energies - given its considerable investment in the affected areas, Cabo Delgado province, for natural gas extraction.

    President Kagame also answered a question over Rwanda's rapid response - deploying troops ahead of the joint southern Africa regional bloc Sadc's mission:

    “There's a neighbour with a burning house and the one who arrives first is asked: why were you so quick to put the fire out?”

    He said that the mission was not linked to resources and was "just to make the area safe" and support Mozambique.

    Read more:

  7. Detained Rwandan hip-hop star Jay Polly dies

    Jay Polly
    Image caption: The artist was detained in April after holding a party in breach of Covid regulations

    One of Rwanda's most famous rappers, Jay Polly, has died at the age of 33 in a hospital in Kigali.

    The artist was in jail awaiting trial on drug charges, and was rushed to hospital early on Thursday.

    In a statement, the Rwanda Correctional Service, which is in charge of prisons, said the musician had consumed a mixture of methanol disinfectant, sugar and water before he was rushed to hospital.

    Jay Polly was arrested at his home in April after holding a party in violation of coronavirus rules.

    His brother, Maurice Uwera, said the Rwanda Correctional Service had informed him about the death without giving further details.

    His girlfriend Kessy Kayonga, in Kenya’s capital Nairobi, said she had “a life project” with the star.

    “I am in deep sorrow, I don’t believe it yet until I get to Rwanda and see it myself,” she told the BBC

    “Everyone who met or lived with Jay Polly will remember him for his love, kindness and how he was always smiling,” she added.

    Many fans of the Rwandan hip-hop star have taken to social media to mourn him.

  8. Rwanda to host dozens of Afghan schoolgirls

    Sola pupils
    Image caption: Sola, which means "peace" in Pashto, is the only all-girls boarding school in Afghanistan

    Rwanda will host dozens of schoolgirls being relocated from Afghanistan following the takeover of their country by Taliban militants.

    Shabana Basij-Rasikh, the founder of a privately run School of Leadership, Afghanistan (Sola), said on Tuesday that about 250 students, staff and family members were en-route to Rwanda, through Qatar, to begin a “semester abroad for our entire student body”.

    Rwanda’s education ministry has tweeted a message of welcome to the Sola community:

    View more on twitter

    Ms Basij-Rasikh said they hoped to resettle temporarily and wanted to return to Afghanistan when the situation permitted.

    "My heart breaks for my country," she wrote on social media.

    "I’ve stood in Kabul, and I’ve seen the fear, and the anger, and the ferocious bravery of the Afghan people. I look at my students, and I see the faces of the millions of Afghan girls, just like them, who remain behind."

    Afghans have been growing desperate to leave their country, in fear of living under Taliban rule, and thousands have have been evacuated to other countries.

    The Taliban, which enforced a strict version of Islamic law when they ran Afghanistan before 2001, retook full control of the country more than a week ago.

  9. Hotel Rwanda trial: Belgian lawyer deported

    Vincent Lurquin
    Image caption: Authorities said Vincent Lurquin had been working in Rwanda without a permit

    Rwandan authorities have deported a Belgian lawyer representing Paul Rusesabagina - an ex-hotelier whose story inspired the film Hotel Rwanda, based on the country's 1994 genocide.

    Officials said that Vincent Lurquin was deported on Saturday for working without a permit.

    Earlier he'd appeared in court to represent Mr Rusesabagina, who is accused of nine terrorism-related charges, including forming and funding an armed rebel group.

    Mr Lurquin is Mr Rusesabagina's lawyer in Belgium and has not been defending him during the trial, reports the AFP news agency.

    He has not commented on his deportation.

    Regis Gatarayiha, Rwanda's director general of immigration, told Reuters news agency that Mr Lurquin was in the country on a visitor's visa, and had not been accredited by the Rwandan Bar Association.

    Mr Rusesabagina, 66, became famous after Don Cheadle played him in the 2004 film Hotel Rwanda, which depicts his efforts to save hundreds of people from being murdered during the 1994 genocide.

    He left Rwanda in 1996 and sought asylum in Belgium, and later the US. While living in exile, he became the leader of Rwanda's opposition MRCD group. It has an armed wing, the FLN, which stages attacks in Rwanda.

    Mr Rusesabagina has denied the charges against him, and has accused the government of kidnapping him and bringing him back to Rwanda.

    The authorities say he was arrested under an international warrant.

  10. Mozambique launches a major offensive against militants

    Video content

    Video caption: The Mozambican armed forces have been struggling to regain control of the province.

    The Mozambican armed forces have been struggling to regain control of the province.

  11. Rwanda restricts basketball championship to jabbed fans

    Samba Cyuzuzo

    BBC Great Lakes

    General views of BAL Finals court before the Basketball Africa League third place game at Kigali Arena on May 30, 2021 in Kigali, Rwanda.

    Rwanda's basketball fans will be allowed into the Kigali Arena to see the Africa championship that kicks off on Tuesday but must be vaccinated first.

    This 30th edition of the 16 national male teams championship known as AfroBasket, was moved back a week due to the Covid pandemic.

    Rwanda Basketball Federation says it is mandatory for Rwandans to have taken at least the first dose of a Covid vaccine to be allowed into the arena.

    “For those who are not vaccinated yet, a vaccination desk will be established” at the arena, the federation says in a statement.

    Spectators will also be required to present a negative test result, and buy an entrance ticket of at least $7.

    Tunisia are the defending champions..

    Nearly a million people in Rwanda have received at least the first jab since the vaccination campaign started in February.

  12. US sends 500,000 Pfizer vaccines to Rwanda

    Samba Cyuzuzo

    BBC Great Lakes

    A medical worker injects a second dose of Astra Zeneca vaccine to a patient in a Covid-19 (coronavirus) vaccination centre in Kigali,
    Image caption: Rwanda has vaccinated about 10% of its adult population

    The US has sent nearly half a million doses of the Pfizer vaccine to Rwanda, White House spokesman Kevin Munoz has tweeted.

    It included part of “500 million shots pledged and purchased this summer” by President Joe Biden's administration for the Covax initiative, which delivers vaccines to poorer countries, he said.

    Rwanda, which has vaccinated 10% of its adult population, is yet to confirm receipt of the US donation.

    Earlier this year, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned that the world faced a "catastrophic moral failure" because rich nations had been hoarding Covid vaccines and urged them to donate jabs to poorer nations.

    Rwanda, which saw infections spike in July because of the Delta variant, has vaccinated almost a million people since February.

    On Sunday, health officials said they hoped normal life would resume in the country by early 2022 if vaccination rates continued as scheduled.

  13. Rwandan refugee 'suspect in death of French priest'

    BBC World Service

    A Roman Catholic priest has been killed in the Vendée region of western France.

    French media are reporting that the suspected killer is a Rwandan refugee who is also suspected of starting a fire that caused serious damage to the cathedral in the nearby city of Nantes last year.

    He's said to have gone to police this morning to turn himself in.

    France's interior minister, Gerald Darmanin, is heading to the region.

    He's criticised a post on social media by the far-right politician, Marine Le Pen, asking why that refugee had not been deported.

    Mr Darmanin said the man could not be expelled while under investigation for the fire.

  14. Rwanda leader requests Tanzania to deploy Swahili teachers

    Samba Cyuzuzo

    BBC Great Lakes

    President Samia ended her two-day visit to Rwanda on Tuesday.
    Image caption: Rwanda adopted Swahili as an official language

    Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame has asked his Tanzanian counterpart to deploy Swahili teachers to help boost Rwanda’s efforts in teaching the language.

    In a state banquet on Monday night - marking the end of President Samia Suluhu's two-day visit - President Kagame said that Rwanda had already introduced Swahili lessons in schools.

    In 2017, Rwanda adopted Swahili as the fourth official language after Kinyarwanda, French and English but pick-up of the language has been slow because of a shortage of teachers.

    Swahili is also the official language of the East African Community, which Rwanda is a member state.

    Last month, on the African Integration Day, Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni called on Africans to learn Swahili to aid in unifying the continent.

  15. Rwandan troops kill 14 militants in Mozambique operation

    Rwandan soldiers during their deployment to Mozambique
    Image caption: Rwanda deployed 1,000 troops to help Mozambique in the fight against militants

    Rwandan forces killed 14 militants during their recent operations in Mozambique, an army spokesperson has said.

    One Rwandan soldier was injured in one of the missions but is recovering well.

    The operations were launched in different areas of the north between 24 and 28 June.

    The coastal town of Mocimboa da Praia was seized by Islamist militant fighters a year ago.

    Rwanda deployed 1,000 soldiers to Mozambique to help in the fight against militants.

    Other African countries are in the process of deploying their troops.

    The Rwandan forces were reported to have helped the Mozambican army retake a base from the Islamist militants earlier this week.

    The conflict, which began in 2017, has forced hundreds of thousands of Mozambicans from their homes and has caused the shut-down of a multi-billion dollar gas project.

  16. Rwanda genocide suspect extradited from Netherlands

    Samba Cyuzuzo

    BBC Great Lakes

    The Netherlands has extradited to Rwanda a 72-year-old suspect accused of complicity in the 1994 genocide.

    Venant Rutunga was immediately taken into custody after he left a Dutch plane that arrived in Rwanda's capital, Kigali, on Monday night.

    In a statement, Rwanda’s state prosecutor commended the Dutch authorities for “contributing to the global effort to fight impunity”.

    Mr Rutunga was arrested in the Netherlands in 2019 on an arrest warrant issued by Rwanda.

    He fought against his extradition but lost the legal battle in May.

    The authorities in Rwanda accuse Mr Rutunga of orchestrating the killing of around 1,000 people from the Tutsi ethnic group when he served as a state agricultural officer in the southern part of the country.