Months after the International Criminal Court convicted its first criminal, Rwandan President Paul Kagame’s name is appearing in the same sentence with these words, ‘might be charged with aiding war crimes’.

The head of the US war crimes office has warned Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame and other Rwandese leaders could face prosecution at the International Criminal Court for arming groups responsible for atrocities in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Stephen Rapp, who leads the US Office of Global Criminal Justice, has told the Guardian the Rwandan leadership may be open to charges of “aiding and abetting” crimes against humanity in a neighbouring country – actions similar to those for which the former Liberian president Charles Taylor was jailed for 50 years by an international court in May.

The latest development comes in the wake of an incriminating United Nations report that alleges Kigali is supporting the Bosco Ntaganda-led M23 group responsible for the latest fighting in eastern DRC.

Ntaganda alias ‘The Terminator’ was indicted by the ICC six years ago for war crimes including the forced recruitment of child soldiers. The UN report specifically accuses Rwanda of shielding Ntaganda from justice.

As Rwanda continues to refute all the allegations, Washington has since gone head and revealed it was cutting some military aid to Rwanda perhaps as a way of cutting on the surplus that ends up in the rebels’ hands.

Reports by the BBC have today indicated that Congolese troops, supported by UN forces continue to push rebels away from Goma, an important town in the East of the country which nearly fell for the rebels.

Once again, the ICC is back to haunt a son of Africa and as the question of whether Kagame and his group are guilty of aiding the M23 rebels inside DRC moves towards getting answered, more lives are lost while many more remain at peril while gun fire continues to rule eastern Congo. Perhaps the other question that needs answers ahead of a Kampala meeting next month to discuss the Congo Crisis is what Uganda’s role is in all this?

Meanwhile, the river continues to flow. One wonders if it has all the rights to even flow the way it is. Image


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