Welcome to Africanews

Please select your experience

Watch Live

News

news

Former Rwandan politician gets life sentence for hate speech during genocide

Former Rwandan politician gets life sentence for hate speech during genocide

Rwanda

A Rwandan court on Friday sentenced former politician, Leon Mugesera, to life in prison.

He was sentenced for hate speech he made aimed at stirring up killings of minority Tutsis during the central African country’s genocide more than two decades ago.

Reading out the verdict for the case which lasted four hours, the presiding judge, Antoine Muhima, said that based on the crimes committed by Mugesera in 1992, the court found him guilty of genocide crimes thus sending him to prison for life.

...failure to show any remorse of the crimes he committed ever since he was arrested, court finds him guilty of genocide crimes...

“Due to the fact that Leon Mugesera used the authority he had as a leader to incite hatred among the population which led to the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi and failure to show any remorse of the crimes he committed ever since he was arrested, court finds him guilty of genocide crimes and has sentenced him to life imprisonment” Judge Muhima said.

Mugesera, was extradited to Rwanda from Quebec in 2012 where he had lived in exile for years, teaching for a time at Laval University and legally challenging Canada’s efforts to deport him to face trial on genocide charges.

He was accused of five crimes, namely, inciting the message to take part in genocide, planning the genocide, conspiracy in the crime of genocide, harassing the Tutsi as a crime against mankind and inciting hatred among people, he was found guilty on all counts.

An estimated 800,000 Tutsi and moderate Hutus were killed by extremist forces in the regime dominated by Hutus over a period of 100 days in 1994.