As the Rwandan Government grapples to shake off international uproar over the leaked UN report accusing the Rwandan troops of committing acts of genocide and mass murder in DRC,a former RPA Major has joined the fray, accusing President Kagame of systematic Hutu mass killings since 1990. Major Alphonse Furuma also accuses Kagame of attempting to kill former President Habyarimana at the aborted swearing in ceremony of the broad based government early 1994, and reveals why former MP Evariste Burakari, was assassinated.
In a lengthy statement to The Newsline, Maj. Furuma, a former Rwandese Patriotic Army Political Commissar during the RPA war, and later Aide de Camp (ADC) to the former army Chief of Staff Gen. Kayumba Nyamwasa, further accuses his former Commander in Chief, President Kagame, of ordering killings of thousands of innocent civilians during the RPA war and after capture of power.
Maj. Furuma, the first senior officer to fall out with Kagame, details numerous Hutu mass killings, dating from the early days of RPA invasion.
He also accuses Kagame of ordering systematic massacres, laying of mines, looting property,demolishing homes and other building as well as destruction of crops so as to displace the population and create an RPF/RPA controlled territory free of the Hutu.
These crimes, Furuma explains, were carried out between 1992-4 in the Districts of Muvumba, Ngarama, Bwisigye, Kiyombe, Mukarangye and Cyumba. Other districts were Kibali, Kivuye, Cyungo, as well as in Kinigi, Butaro, Cyeru and Nyamugari.
He further says military operations were carried out against known civilian targets, in most cases peasants. ‘Known Refugee Camps and densely populated villages and Towns were routinely shelled with 120 mm motors, 107 mm rocked launchers and 122 mm guns mounted on hill tops overlooking such locations,’ he writes.
Examples of these incidents include the shelling of Rwibare Refugee Camp in Muvumba, Kisaro Refugee Camp in Buyoga as well as Byumba and Ruhengeri towns in 1991 and 1992.
The exiled officer claims that when the Arusha Peace Talks for Rwanda started in 1992, Paul Kagame launched a deliberate policy to create a Tutsiland through Hutu massacres, massive population displacement, property appropriation and land grabbing in the North East, East, South East and in
Central Rwanda. “This is the policy we saw at work in 1993, 1994 and 1995,” Furuma says in the statement.
Furuma also accuses Kagame of assassinating Hutu elites including members of the RPF/RPA like Member of High Command Muvunanyambo who was killed in 1992 as well as many civilian cadres recruited from the demilitarized zone in Northern Rwanda between 1992 and 1994.
‘Once again, the districts most affected include Muvumba, Ngarama, Bwisigye, Kiyombe, Mukarangye, Cyumba, Kibali, Kivuye, Cyungo, Kinigi, Butaro, Cyeru and Nyamugari,” he asserts.
The former officer also claims there were periodic revenge massacres against the Hutu population whenever the regime in Kigali massacred the Tutsi. For example such revenge massacres were carried out in the RPA Offensive of February 1993 covering the entire North of the country, he says.
‘The offensive was launched overnight, by morning several districts had been taken over by the RPA and in the hours and days that followed the Hutu were hunted and shot at sight.
In one location in the District of Ngarama, at least 134 people were massacred and buried in shallow graves’, Furuma writes.
From 1992 up to 1994, Major Furuma alleges politico-military cadres (RPF/A) were infiltrated behind government lines to carry out terrorist activities especially in urban areas.
‘From 28th December 1993 to 6th April 1994, this time using the RPA Unit in Kigali, more people were trained, arms distributed and an urban terrorist campaign launched against civilian targets in Kigali City,’ he adds.
Furuma says these terrorist groups, among others, targeted high profile politicians including the late President Juvenal Habyalimana, former Minister Gatabazi, Gapyisi and Martin Bucyana. ‘For example President Habyalimana had been a target for assassination between January and April 1994 at a swearing ceremony of the Broad Based Transition Government scheduled to have taken place at the Parliamentary Buildings in Kigali’, he says.
Major Furuma also says Kagame ordered counter genocide massacres covering the entire nation immediately the genocide started. ‘All RPA Units were under orders to kill any Hutu on sight and for several months, many soldiers did kill as many Hutu as they could’ the statement adds.
Furuma details the massacres at Rwesero Seminary on April 21, 1994, which included seven priests who had taken refugee there; the massacres at Kabgayi on June 5, 1994, which included three Catholic Bishops and other Church leaders; the massacres by the RPA Kigali Battalion in the hours and daysimmediately following the start of the genocide and, the killing of Hutu families in locations north of Kigali City like Kimihurura and Remera. Others massacres, he contends, were carried out in the Province of Gitarama.