RWANDA: HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSE AT GIKONDO IS A GLIMPSE OF FAR MORE

RWANDA: HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSE AT GIKONDO IS A GLIMPSE OF FAR MORE
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The Rwandan political coalition composed of political organisations Amahoro PC, FDU-Inkingi, PDP – Imanzi, PS -Imberakuri and Rwanda National Congress - RNC would like to express its gratitude to Human Rights Watch for calling for the closure of the Unofficial Detention Center in Gikondo - Rwanda.  The coalition is quite pleased that Human Rights Watch has helped to demonstrate with this small but sad story, the true nature of the Rwandan regime: lack of empathy and disregard for the disadvantaged people in the community, mockery of the rule of law, cynicism and obsession with external image at the expense of its own citizens. As Daniel Bekele, the Africa Director of Human Rights Watch points out, the positive image of Kigali as clean and tidy is highly paid by the underdogs of the city: the socially and politically excluded, i.e. street vendors, sex workers, beggars, homeless people, and suspected petty criminals who are forcefully collected as refuse from the streets of Kigali and dumped in a center away from the eyes of external visitors. “The contrast between the immaculate streets of central Kigali and the filthy conditions in Gikondo couldn’t be starker,” HRW points out.

The underlying iceberg

The coalition has learnt from reliable retired intelligence officers that this center, which is run by the Police, also serves as a screening place for suspected members of the FDLR and other opposition groups who undergo torture before they are transferred to DMI torture chambers in Nasho and Kami Barracks for further interrogations. Some of these suspects and others, picked at random, are said to be sent among others to Nasho military camp that trains military interrogators and they are used as guinea pigs for trial in various interrogation techniques or chemical substances used to kill or debilitate critics. According to credible sources the trainers include North Koreans. Those who do not survive the interrogation techniques are thrown away, especially when they have no relatives or the latter are not aware of their whereabouts.  

The coalition calls for the immediate closure of this dumping centre for the poor and destitute and condemns, in the strongest terms, the alleged use of the poor as guineas pigs in research into the most 
effective interrogations techniques.

 

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