There is bad blood between authorities in Kigali and UN thanks to a leaked report on genocide and crimes against humanity implicating Rwanda forces in DRC. The darling of UN, Rwanda, is now threatening to stop cooperating with UN.
Though Rwanda has the right to defend itself, it ought to consider what transpired in 1994. When UN hurriedly declared that the killings in Rwanda were genocide, the accused people-Hutu, were not given any chance to argue their case. If precedent is to be followed, Rwanda's denial does not help anything save to show the UN's double standard shall it bow to the pressure and stop publishing the report.
According to Rwandan government spokesperson Ben Rutasingwa, “It is immoral and unacceptable that UN, an organisation that failed outright to prevent genocide in Rwanda...now they accuse the army that stopped genocide of committing atrocities in DRC.” This is the 'big weapon' Rwanda has always used to intimidate the UN and the whole world.
The point at hand is not who stopped or failed to stop genocide in Rwanda. The issue is whether the Rwandan army committed genocide in DRC. The UN failed to prevent the Rwanda genocide from as it did in DRC. But shall UN failure be used as a pretext of burying the rights of those that were felled in DRC? This is a separate case that should not be used to deprive and trample on the rights of DRC. Two wrongs never make a right. Today, Kenya cannot intimidate ICC in defending its post-ballot warlords simply because ICC has failed to arrest Omar Bashir. These are two different cases with different merit.
If Rwanda sticks on its guns and UN cowers away, who then will prosecute the criminals that committed genocide in DRC? Shall individual countries institute cases against Rwandan authorities as Spain and France did? Will they be accused of sabotaging Rwanda and the development already realized there? The blood of the innocent people of DRC as it was for Rwandans cannot be spilled in vain. Invading DRC was illegal ab initio.
If it was possible for Rwandan authorities to come up with the numbers of those that were felled in the 1994 genocide ex-parte, what is wrong with the UN looking into what actually transpired in DRC when Rwanda and Uganda invaded and plundered DRC?
Shall UN withdraw this report or cower away just because Rwandan authorities have threatened to withdraw their army in Darfur, UN will end up in an awkward situation thereby losing its credibility before the eyes of the world. This should not be allowed to happen.
Source: The African Executive Magazine Sept. 15, 2010.