The indispensable Rwandan priest, refugee and naturalized Frenchman, was charged and detained on Wednesday April 14th. He was accused, among other things, of “providing food to the militiamen who massacred Tutsi in his church in Rwanda in 1994”.
A Rwandan priest, refugee and French naturalized, was charged and detained on Wednesday. Among other things, he was accused of “providing food to the militiamen” who massacred Tutsi in his church in Rwanda in 1994, which he denies to the prosecutor.
Accused of “Genocide”
Marcel Hitayezu, born in 1956, was indicted by a specialized examining magistrate at the Paris Court, particularly for “genocide” and “complicity in crimes against humanity” in crimes against humanity.
He was arrested at his home in Montlieu-la-Garde, Charente-Maritime, on Wednesday, according to a source close to the investigation.
“The priest of the parish Mubuga (South) in Rwanda in 1994, Marcel H., is accused of” in April 1994 “depriving the Tutsi who sought refuge in his church” and “providing food “The Interahamwe militiamen who attacked the Tutsi refugees in the building, Pnat said in a statement. “Marcel H. denied these facts in his first examination before the examining magistrate,” added the prosecutor.
This priest was affected by an extradition request from Rwanda that the Court of Cassation finally rejected in October 2016, as was the case with all suspects of involvement in the Kigali alleged genocide.
A genocide that killed more than 800,000 people
According to the United Nations, the genocide killed more than 800,000 people, mostly Tutsi, who were exterminated between April and July 1994.
To investigate the charges against Marcel Hitay, the French judiciary opened a judicial investigation three years later, on July 26, 2019. “Until Wednesday he was pastor of the pastor of a parish in Montlieu-la-Garde” Diocese of La Rochelle.
According to the daily La Croix, the priest came to this diocese “between 1998 and 1999” after three years in refugee camps in Eastern Congo and “received refugee status on January 26, 2011”.
“This is excellent news,” replied Alain Gauthier. For this co-founder of the Collectif des Parties Civililes Pour Le Rwanda (CPCR), in this case the civil party, “the Church must ask itself how to make people suspected of participating in genocide responsible”.
Another priest who sought refuge in France, Wenceslas Munyeshyaka, was accused of participating in the 1994 massacres. He was fired in 2015, which became final in 2019.