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France court blocks extradition of genocide suspect

[JURIST] A court in Toulouse, France, on Tuesday refused extradition requests for a Rwandan man facing charges of genocide and crimes against humanity. Joseph Habyarimana allegedly incited the murder of monks when he worked in a monastery in 1994. Authorities accuse Habyarimana of identifying Tutsi monks to killers. The court stated it denied extradition [RFI report] because his actions were not crimes at the time they were committed. Many Rwandans have criticized this decision, comparing it to trials of former Nazi collaborators.

The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) [official website] has continued to try suspects in Rwanda and hear appeals for crimes that occurred during the 1994 genocide. In January two Rwandan police officers were sentenced [JURIST report] to 20 years in jail for the murder of a Transparency International [advocacy website] anti-corruption activist. Last July the ICTR unanimously affirmed [JURIST report] a 30-year jail sentence for former army chief Augustin Bizimungu for the role he played in the genocide. In December 2012 the ICTR convicted [JURIST report] former Rwandan minister Augustin Ngirabatware, sentencing him to 35 years in prison on charges of genocide, incitement to commit genocide and rape as a crime against humanity.

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