On May 18, 2021, French President Emmanuel Macron hosted a France-Africa Economic Summit and International Conference on Sudan in Paris, France. Several African heads of state attended, including Rwandan dictator General Paul Kagame. In preparation for the summit, Rwanda and France have been working to renew diplomatic ties, after years of diplomatic conflicts, with the governments of the two countries blaming each other for the 1990s Rwandan ethnic massacres, genocides, and civil wars. On the sidelines,Rwandan Dictator Paul Kagame told the French media why he holds the grip on his country, and why no one has the right to criticize him for appaulling human rights violations, including systematic massacres and invasions and looting of other countries. He specifically warned the United States of America and the European Union, to stay away from criticising his government.
"Why do you think being fair belongs to Europe or US or to anybody, not to us?” General Paul Kagame rhetorically asked, before adding "It’s like the only thing to be fair in Rwanda or in Africa has to be supervised by the US or some other place. No. Absolutely not,”
The French Media, including France-24 and Radio France Internionale were pressing him on why he kidnapped and jailed Rwandan opposition leaders and activists.
General Paul Kagame has been consistenly accused of grave human rights violations, over the last 26 years he has been in power. In fact, on January 25, 2021, governments around the World, including Africa, Asia, Europe, Noth America, South America, especially the members of the CommonWealth and The European Union, the United States, and others published statements unanimously calling the Rwandan government on systematic human rights abuses, killings and disappearances of political opponents, activists, and journalists. The CommonWealth has concelled a summit that was planned in Kigali, in June 2021 (See Here Rwanda: CommonWealth Cancels the Summit Planned in Kigali)
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The France-Africa Summit was convened by French President Emmanuel Macron to, officially, find ways, to help African countries, that are facing a major economic crisis, due to COVID-19. At the onset , French President Macron said that although facing major challenges "Africa has everything to succeed, and the capacity if we collectively decide to propose a new reality". The Summit followed an the International Conference on Sudan held on May 17, 2021.
The meeting was attended by International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva and President of West African Development Bank(BOAD), Serge Ekue. The more that 24 state leaders that attended the Summit included Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) president Felixi Tshisekedi, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, Rwandan President Paul Kagame, Ghanaian President Nana Akufo-Addo, Angolan President Joao Lourenco, and Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi. One of the attendees is the Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok who took over power in Sudan after the 2019 ousting of the longtime dictator Omar al-Beshir.
However, several critics have raised voices on the fact that the Summit may be used to support dictators or cover up the political challenges going on in Africa.
For many critics and analysts, Africa is facing many more pressing issues challenges not on the agend of the current summit. Hence, they view the summit as another aimless wasteful gathering aimed at benefiting France than Africa and to keep African leaders and their countries under the watch of France. They gave the example of Chad.
Recentrly, Chad’s long time ruling dictator Idriss Déby, addressed as Marshal Idriss Déby Itno, died from combat wounds, following intense fighting against rebels on Sunday and Monday. He was replaced 37-year-old son, General Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno. French President Emmanuel Macron has supported the new government, while, though offering condolences to the people of Chad, the U.S. government underlined that that it supports a “peaceful transition of power in accordance with the Chadian constitution.”
Denial of the 2010 UN Mapping Report On Systematic Massacres of Congolese Civilians and Rwandan Refugees
General Paul Kagame was pressed by the French media on the systematic massacres committed by his troops in the neighboring Democratic Republic of the Congo since 1996. The massacres were documented in a United Nations report, known as 2010 UN Mapping Report, published in 2010 report by UN mendated experts and investigators. The report documents human rights violations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) between 1993-2003. More than 6 million Congolese civilians and Rwandan refugees were killed, mostly by Paul Kagame's invading troops, by 2003. It is currently estimated that the number of Congolese civilians and Rwandan refugees killed by Rwandan troops and Rwandan military backed militias now amounts to more than 10 million.
General Paul Kagame dismissed the UN Mapping Report and accused those referring to the report as genocide deniers, or seeking to promote the narrative of the double genocide or to cover the incompetency of the UN peacekeeping mission in the DRC.
@AfroAmerica Network 2021