Rwandan Blogger To stand Trial Over Genocide Ideology.

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Rwandan Blogger Joseph Nkusi is slated to go on trial on  Monday 13th march 2017 in the Rwandan capital, Kigali, where he faces charges of genocide ideology, sectarianism, and inciting insurrection or trouble amongst the population.

Joseph Nkusi who is at the moment held at Kimironko prison was arrested on 8th October 2016 after landing in Kigali from Norway were authorities rejected his asylum claim, citing a lack of evidence of a risk of persecution in Rwanda.

Some of the writings on his blog that have landed him in trouble include those which  relay claims about the genocide that are unfounded stating, for example, that both Hutus and Tutsis were targeted in a “double genocide.” Which is an offensive to genocide survivors, and contrary to research findings by Human Rights Watch and other independent organizations, Some of his the other writings criticize the Rwandan government’s human rights record.

The Rwandan law underwhich he is to be tried defines genocide ideology as a deliberate, public act to show that a person is characterized by an ethnic, religious, national or racial nature, with the aim to advocate for the commission of genocide, or to support genocide.

However the Human Rights watch is concerned that though the country’s legal frame work has improved it still retains language that is used to criminalize free speech as the group has observed a number of trials in which charges of Genocide ideology and inciting insurrection have been used to prosecute people who criticized the government.

In the statement seen by this website Human Rights watch also called on  the Rwandan authorities to  ensure that Joseph Nkusi gets a fair trial and is not prosecuted nor convicted for criticism of the government or the ruling party and  International actors, including the government of Norway, should closely monitor the trial proceedings and be prepared to publicly denounce any breaches of fair trial standards or violation of free speech.






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