Testimony of Abdul Ruzibiza
PS: I prefer to give my photograph and my address, so that my allegations are not taken for anonymities and to prevent that nobody has to think that they originate in, the people collected in the street, like affirmed it the President Kagame in Brussels.
Following the advertisement of an existence of an investigation on the crash landing of the plane, which transported President Juvénal Habyarimana and his counterpart of Burundi, with nine other people originating in three different countries: Rwanda, Burundi and France. International newspapers, radios and televisions were pressed to disseminate
this information. This plane belonged to the régime’s the civil aviation and flew over
a demilitarized zone; some of the journalists knew how to locate me and they contacted me to ask whether I could confirm that the allegations of the newspapers really emanated from the quoted sources, sources of which I form part. I affirmed that it was true.
However, considering the distortion of the information through the channels of its diffusion, I prefer to deliver this information personally, instead of letting people forward events such as they were not lived. Concerning the investigations in progress, I am not an agent of a legal institution. I was questioned with others on what we knew, and we answered. If I dare to only give this testimony; it is that my comrades fear to be assassinated by Kagame if they were expressed on this subject. It would not be the first time he does that.
Myself, I prefer to break the silence, to bear witness on the responsibility of FPR/APR in the genocide of Tutsis, the massacre of the Hutus during the war that it had to carry out and to which I took share. I want that the Rwandan and international opinion understand what occurred to Rwanda. Because until now, only the version of the facts and their interpretation made with the liking of the interests of the FPR were made public.
At a moment when we prepare to commemorate the genocide, which carried our most expensive beings, it is time that the truth is known. It has been ten years that Kagame proclaimed himself as the saver of Tutsis. Whereas it is him who made possible their extermination, and who even prevented us from assisting them, whereas we had the means to do it.
In appendix of this press release, you will find a detailed testimony on what was happened on the territory occupied by the FPR. My intention is to release the Rwandans who have been held as hostage of the lie that “a man” stopped the genocide, by telling them the truth, which would make possible the reconciliation between all the Rwandans.
I thank you.
TESTIMONY AIMING TO DEMONSTRATE HOW THE RWANDAN GOVERNMENT AND THE RPF ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE ERRORS, WHICH MADE POSSIBLE THE GENOCIDE. DID THE FPR COME TO HELP THE TUTSI, AS IT HAS BEEN OFTEN REPETED TO US?
After the publication of the report of the investigation into the crash landing of the civil aircraft that transported eleven people of which civil and military eminent personalities from Rwanda, Burundi and France, among them two Presidents, Juvénal Habyarimana of Rwanda and Cyprien Ntaryamira of Burundi, the newspapers which one is unaware of how they reached the detailed report of the investigation have largely made the echo these last days. For what relates to me, I will provide my testimony on the operation of the FPR and its armed branch APR because I belonged to these two organizations before taking the direction of the exile. I take this initiative with the idea that the information conveyed by the media was deformed for the profit of the latter by allotting me words, which I did not pronounce, what served the purpose of those who had advantage to continue to deny the truth on what occurred.
LET ME BEGIN WITH DECLINING MY IDENTITE:
My name is RUZIBIZA, baptized Vénuste a few days after my birth. Since the beginning of my commitment to the service of (RPF) Family, they nicknamed me ABDUL as my code name. I kept it to my entry in the army in 1990. The reasons of that it is that at the time of the entry to the army, the members of the Family forwarded to us the ones with the others until our arrival in the zone controlled by the FPR Inkotanyi. The list of these code names preceded us. If at the request of your name, you answered by an unknown name, you were killed using an old hoe. You were taken for one infiltrated in the system of the FPR. By afterwards, when I decided to convert me with Protestantism, I chose the name of Josué. For all these names, I never denied that they belonged to me. With the army, every year that I passed there, I bore the name of RUZIBIZA Abdul. I fled the Country in the night from the 3 to February 4, 2001. I had the rank of second lieutenant, with my number of OP 1920.
I was born in Gitagata, Kanzenze commune in Bugesera. I am of the tutsi ethnic group, resulting from the clan of Abanyiginya, in the family of Abahindiro. My mother is also of the ethnic group of the tutsi of the clan of Abatsobe. I am of tutsi origin on the two sides of my parents, and I am orphan of father and mother. My two parents and my six brothers and sisters were killed, victims of the genocide of 1994. I was eyewitness of the events of which I tell you unfolding; I say it in my membership of the army and the Family of the FPR, as one of the soldiers of the APR which fought for the control of their zone of combat, I also say it like pertaining to the ethno group tutsi. I would like especially that those who will have the occasion to read my writings can know the truth about certain events of great importance, that marked the long walk started by the FPR, but which, arriving at the point where the country had to be released, made the fatal error, which generated the tragedy of the genocide.
THERE ARE PRINCIPLES IN WHICH I BELIEVE AND WHICH NOTHING
1. I am convinced that it was necessary to engage the war against the Habyarimana regime because it denied certain basic rights to the majority of its fellow-citizens including mainly the Tutsi. I however believe that other ways, which are not the recourse to the war should have been tested before taking the weapons. However, no other country was laid out to provide us weapons, because the NRA was the only national army of a country able to help us. Personal relations between Rwandan and nationals within the Ugandan army, often enameled contempt with regard to Rwandan in a country for which they had fought, are one of the principal causes which pushed the Rwandan ones to want to leave the Ugandan territory, without counting on patience that could require long negotiations, which could go up to five years.
2. I am convinced that there was premeditation of the genocide of Tutsi, planned by the high leaders of the Country and the levels in charge of safety. It was carried out by the Hutu population, except for some Tutsi, which being transformed into Hutu were taken part in it. I am convinced that this genocide would never have been possible without the elements which started it, because even if the Hutu had been taken of madness, it was not possible that they awake the morning and sharpen their machetes to cut out Tutsi until a million people. I am also convinced that the FPR by its armed branch the APR killed with premeditation, on order and the attentive glance of its Chief Paul Kagame. Moreover, I am convinced that the genocide was the result of the problems raised by the war started in 1990, especially by the behavior of the APR in the areas, which it had conquered. I will explain this later.
3. I am convinced and I affirm that the APR massacred people of all ethnic groups, with the objective to sow anarchy to facilitate its seizure of power, with price even if the price were the extermination of a whole people.
4. I do not believe at all that the FPR and its army, myself including, ever stopped the genocide. Rather, I am convinced that we drove out the army of the FAR, Interahamwe, Impuzamugambi of the CDR and affiliated youth, thus after having broken the forces which supported the Government, we seized the power. I will explain that too.
5. I am convinced and I affirm that the exhumed bodies of the common graves are not only those of Tutsi, because I know common graves where Inkotanyi threw mixes bodies with the people they killed, they were exhumed together by qualifying them all of Tutsi.
6. I am convinced that if the FPR had wanted it, the genocide should not have taken place. I am convinced that so even if the Government and Interahamwe had planned
to exterminate Tutsi within the framework of the genocide, the APR had just acquired the power, which enabled him to reduce the damage by a million died to less than one hundred thousand.
This means that the FPR did not bring its assistance to the threatened people whereas it had the means of them. I will provide explanations of this.
7. I am convinced that after our seizure of power, which was accompanied by massacres of population, arbitrary acts of arrests and war of aggression against Zaire, it is impossible for the current regime to proceed to the installation of an impartial justice, because the magistrates directly or would be indirectly implied in these horrors under the threat and the pressure of Sir Kagame who dictates his will with all, in his current position of the head of the Country.
8. I believe from the bottom of my heart that the allegations on the responsibility of President Paul Kagame, who gave the order to shot down the plane of Habyarimana, are true. The testimonies, which were given about it, do not all emanate from me, I am not able of it, and I could not be personally everywhere that one tells. Testimonies emanate from several sources, exiled and even those who did not flee the country. Me I decided to speak with the radios and international televisions, because the means at my disposal allow it. Nobody is unaware of that any individual who not only would try to
speak about the inculpation of Kagame, but which quite simply would be allowed to express his only intention to charge him, would expose himself to being killed before he/she did not have time to say anything. International courts or other authorities that will receive competences to act legally will be able to decide if the fact of cutting down the plane took place, while having the evidence and the mandate which make it possible to designate Kagame as author of this crime or to determine that it is him who gave the order to make it happen. Let us satisfy ourselves by giving them time; those who deny these facts and those who affirm them will have the occasion to clash in front of the courts. Me I can speak until the limit of my knowledge, the others will take turns progressively.
9. I am convinced that the Rwandan people has just spent 10 years under the cane of soldiers men from the bush, the Rwandan ones lost confidence in one another, nobody can express himself freely or point finger the responsibility for the FPR in the atrocities of the baptized war of liberation. If information on the unfolding of this war were made available to a greater number of people, much explanation on the origin of the tragedy would be found, and thus the reconciliation could be based on bases of the truth, which would emerge some.
10. I believe of the content of my heart that all those leaders of the country who spend their time with the radios and televisions to contradict the results of the survey by describing them as handling of the French State want to divert the attention of the population of the truth on the crimes that they themselves made. As for the President Kagame, who says that these are rumors, which are assembled of left on the right that mean nothing in his eyes. I see the things differently, and it will not be long for him to realize that he knowingly made worse errors that caused the loss of innumerable human lives.
THE CREATION OF THE RPF AND ITS ARMED FORCE BRANCH, THE APR
I do not have time to reconsider the history, but the FPR is a collective of small associations of former Rwandan refugees in the various countries. I will insist on young people of the 15 years old and more, who studied in Burundi, in Tanzania, Zaire and in Uganda. They were seedbeds of recruitment of the army. The first had been made recruit by the NRA, the others joined at the beginning of the war.
The important is that young people had grown by nourishing the conviction that the elder ones who one called Inyenzi, had very badly behaved not to gain the victory for which they had fought for. The FPR initially settled in the heads of the young people in the hope
that all the problems will be solved by them, i.e. by the army, since they did not consider any other strategy than that to fight for their country. In short, people had prepared to resolve the problem by the military way and thought that all was going to depend on the reports of force. This is why, the head of the Army Paul Kagame, was much more powerful than the President of the FPR.
Since the beginning, I personally noted this error because the consequences continued
to worsen the situation and even currently this established fact did not change. They are the soldiers, their hierarchy, and their services of information, which direct the country.
On the question relating to the reasons, which pushed the FPR to attack immediately after its foundation, without awaiting for the results of the negotiations which Rwanda carried out with Uganda on the problem of the Rwandan refugees, the FPR made a point of ruining them while having found the pretext of attacking.
President Museveni was shown to have recruited too many Rwandans in the Ugandan army because the Rwandan ones were numerous to occupy most of the senior officers positions. The examples of those who were indicated as Rwandans that they want it or not were numerous: Major Général Fred Lay Rwigyema, Major Général Mugisha Muntu, Colonel Mateeka, Lt Colonel Adam Wasswa, Major Cris Bayingana, Major Peter Bayingana, Major Samuel Kanyemera Alias Kaka, Major Paul Kagame, Major Ndungutse, Major Kale Kayihura of Bufumbira, and other subalterns of which captains and lieutenants, like Twahirwa Louis, Musitu, Karangwa Bombi, Gashumba, Cyiza,
Bagire, Ngoga, Muhire, Kaddafi, Nyamurangwa, Musana, Bigabiro. One cannot all enumerate them, and the majority of them were commanders of companies or more. What irritated more the Ugandans, it was that the Rwandan ones had seized the important places within the strategic positions: services of information and military finances, presidential guards and that of Rwigyema; the others directed the military operations. That irritated the nationals and caused tensions between the Ugandan and the Rwandan ones. Those who chose the date of October 1, 1990 to start the war did no find other solutions.
October 1990 many did not believe that the Rwandans were escaped prisoners of the Ugandan military camps, but really they deserted from the Ugandan army. But this does not want to say that President Museveni was not informed by his services of information. However while following the military procedure, the last one that discussed the information to be forwarded to the President Museveni was a Rwandan, as that to whom he entrusted his secrecies. Those who crossed the border the first and second days of the
offensive formed a manpower a little higher than 3 000. Nobody wanted to be opposed at the desertion of such people, especially that one said oneself: "Leave quickly so that we can recover our stations".
Rwigyema was quickly killed by some of his soldiers; those who planned his assassination have abstained to take the direction of the army not to be discovered; one could immediately suspect them of having thus acted to seize the command of the army. He was killed whereas he was the only one with the knowing of how the war had been planned.
When Kagame was requested by the President Museveni to direct the APR, the soldiers quickly showed it of "Pilato", and stated that they did not want him at their head. Major Peter Bayingana says to him: "You are physically and mentally inapt, how can you claim to direct men? That he was to turn over to whom had sent him, and that he was inapt and unable to direct people. That if that who had sent him wanted to express contempt towards the other leaders of the military operations, he had only to appoint a Ugandan soldier to the head of the APR. To seize the throne of the command of the army, Paul Kagame returned escorted of more than 10 jeeps, accompanied of the Major general Salim Saleh and soldiers of PPU of the personal guard of Museveni, and it was the same day that Bayingana and Bunyenyezi were assassinated...
Since this day, Afande Kagame began the long voyage that continues so far; he has directed with an iron hand people of whom he knew that they did not like him at all.
This had harmful consequences, because the direction of the army was entrusted to somebody who did not have confidence in person, at such point that he was occupied personally of all the details; he divided the army into factions, transformed into agents of denouncement; introduced the reign terror and the least counterpart was sanctioned by the death penalty with the old hoe as if it were a question of killing out of the pigs.
Within the framework of the division of this army with a view to ensure its domination, he introduced the designation of people by cataloguing them in "positive 1", "positive 2" until the "positive 5". Positive the 1 was those coming from Uganda, those cover confidence everywhere where they were, 2 was implemented to those coming from Tanzania, 3 with those coming from Burundi, 4 with those coming from Zaîre, 5 with those coming from Rwanda. The latter, even if they were tutsi, were to wait at least two years to deserve the least confidence. It was the same thing to reach the headquarters of the army, because the command was monopolized by those coming from Uganda in the
proportion of 95 %. The justifications given to this discrimination were that they were
better with the military art, and that they were the only ones able to direct the engagements. There is nothing truth in all that, they were quite simply pretexts to impose the domination from the "positive 1".
Most annoying was that the least fault made by a French-speaking recruit was rigorously sanctioned. The capital punishment with the old hoe was inflicted or you were inserted blows of bayonet in the body until death follows from there.
To have made suspicion on one’s fault, tiredness when one could not advance any more, the attack dysentery following the bad hygienic conditions: here are defects for which "positive 1" would said: "Here are somebody who took taste with the easy life, it is a dog to be cut down, who can be of no utility ". When you were not able any more to walk because of the wounds, one gave the order to complete you immediately. These cruel acts of torture decreased following the round that Paul Kagame carried out in Burundi where members of the RPF family there prohibited him from continuing to kill their children with the old hoe as the pigs are killed. That if he did not want them to fight any more, he had only to let them set out again and resume their studies. After this warning, people started to breathe. On the other hand, those who could fight and who came from Uganda could commit the most odious crimes, they did not undergo tough punishment, but a sorrow of imprisonment of short duration, and took again their functions little afterwards.
Reconsidering a little bit the beginning of the war in October 1990, General Rwigyema in his tactic, had planned to attack by the Mutara region by the park of Akagera, localities that were very lightly populated. They were advantageous to people in spite of the difficulties encountered to find water and food. They were also more advantageous, in that they enabled him to save a sufficient time to be able to explain to the population the motivations of the war started by the FPR. By humility, Rwigyema took care not to be at the origin of the causes, which could involve the slaughter of innocent populations in combat, which one could avoid.
It is not what Kagame conceived, because Mutara did not abound in food, because there were no heights to be protected from the heavy weapons, that in the low lands one was exposed to all the shootings; that it was finally advantageous to pass on heights to reduce the number of dead and casualties. It should be noted that except for the volcanoes, all these hills were highly populated by Hutu bakiga, who one said that they were hostile to Inkotanyi that fought for the re-establishment of feudal monarchy.
In the area of the Volcanoes, the soldiers perished massively. Because of the hunger, cold, dysentery, each unity lost between 5 and 10 people during the first 5 months. For Kagame, that was of no importance, all that made understand that if one refused to obey his orders, he was going to make use of his gun to be obeyed by force. It was that speech that he did not cease repeating with the soldiers at the time of his visits to the unities.
LET ME SUBDIVIDE THE WAR IN VARIOUS STAGES
The First Stage: November 1990 until July 1991.
This stage corresponds to the tactic of dissemination of the guerrillas in all the directions to cause the dispersion of the governmental troops on all the borders of the country to direct the attacks on less strengthened faces. This strategic advantage was obtained by having recourse to a wild cruelty as I will describe it while referring to me with the
geographical configuration of North.
Attacks in the localities of Muvumba, Kiyombe, Nkana, Rushaki, Kaniga-Gatuna and in the surroundings were launched with an exceptional violence: for example, to condense the populations in the same place and then use machine gun against them indistinctly, to collectively rape women and the girls and kill them afterwards under the pretext of preventing that they do not throw a bad fate to them during the combat, to drive out the populations and to despoil their goods, to continue in their displacements to make them die from hunger, to destroy their houses and to sell their sheets in Uganda, to shave the dwellings so that the owners do not have to think any more of going back there.
On the side of Cyumba, Butaro, Nkumba, Kinigi, Mukingo and in the surrounding areas,
military operations were similar to those carried out in Mutara. The important thing in all that was that people understand that Kagame was the only man to plan the course of operation of combat, to indicate the targets to be reached, to ensure of it the follow-up in all its execution so that no other initiative can be carried out apart from his plan. The armed forces of the Habyarimana government had consolidated their defensive positions so that it was very difficult to cross them to enter to the deep country. I can quote some examples.
In Mutara, for the localities of Nyagatare, Rwempasha, Kangoma, Mabare, Mutojo,
Bushara, Kabuga, Nyabihara, Gikagati, Karama, ... each Inkotanyi soldier was conscious of the imminence of the danger. In the localities of the Center, Gatonde, Kaniga I, Kaniga 2, Mukono, Kivuye, everyone knew that one could not venture there.
In Ruhengeri, the positions best strengthened were in Nyamicucu, Butaro-Runaba, Rwabutama, Kinyababa, Muremure, Kagano, Bisate, and everywhere else as in Ruhengeri, Kinigi, ... What I want to show is that each attempt to attack these
localities was violently pushed back, we were put in rout. We had to wash the shame of our failures by proceeding to reprisals on the local populations to make transport our casualties and our dead soldiers’ corpses and to make keep and transport the cattle and the goods plundered to them, then they had to make them dig the tombs in which they were going to be buried, times, one ordered them to kill one another until the last of them, who was in his turn killed by an APR soldier. When the things occurred differently, the populations were connected arms to the legs, one will break their cranium with the old hoe, or one will insert into them blows of knives in the coasts until dead follows from there. Pretexts to kill them so atrociously did not miss, they were for example asking people to reveal the secrecies of the MRND, "how do the soldiers prepare to attack us? », justifications were of all this kind.
When all these macabre acts were finished, we folded up ourselves on our back basis in Uganda. The lie of the FPR since then started, the FPR never acknowledges its crimes. We often swore on our honor that we are not on the Ugandan territory. That continued thus until the release of the war of aggression against Zaire, nobody acknowledged that the APR had crossed the Zairean border.
Second stage: from July 1991 in June 1992:
It is at this time that the APR tried to occupy one of the portions of territory along the border with Uganda. And yet, where the occupation was possible, that point was reached only when all the population was exterminated, the survivors were to flee, and the authorities of the Habyarimana regime could only gather them in reduced spaces, where they received insufficient quantities of food, sheeting to build their small shelters.
If the researchers wanted to know the reasons, which made this genocide possible, they should start by studying this situation (1).
The FPR undertook the tactics to attack the enemy by circumventing it, we cut all the ways of provisioning to him behind him. This tactic was advantageous for FPR Inkotanyi which had insufficient equipment, it pushed the enemy to leave his defensive positions and to move away some. It was a tactic attacks defensive because it was not possible to
resort to the traditional tactics. We were fewer, and much less equipped than the governmental forces. Here harmful consequences resulting from this situation:
1. To circumvent the enemy means that one avoided the line of face between the armies to penetrate in the zones inhabited by the civil population behind the positions of the governmental army. This population not relying on us, it denounced our presence near the governmental army, who could attack us after us to have located and have counted. Among this population, that which was suspected of having seen to us was to be killed, because we did not have the means of maintaining it with the secrecy and did not know how long it was necessary to remain on the spot. That wants to say that each time we had to circumvent the enemy, we had received the ORDER TO KILL ALL the POPULATION WITHOUT PITIE.
2. To venture far from the line of face and our positions meant that we had to survive, thanks to the food that we find on the spot. The population had to be killed to plunder its goods and to destroy the houses to seize the cattle: goats, hens, cows, we nourished ourselves. It happened that one has all that in abundance for then wasting it; each one of us cut down his own animal, and took the parties he wanted to then throw the remainder; for 20 soldiers for example 2 cows, 10 hens, 3 goats were killed for them. All of that, for anybody who knows the poverty of Rwandan, the Hutu who was never informed of the ideology of the FPR, that he only saw coming to kill his children, to rape his wife, to despoil his cattle and to plunder the goods for which he had spent all his forces on, to drive out from his house which one destroyed; that is who wants to understand how the genocide was possible could also start here (2).
3. Sign exhaustion, at a certain time it happened that the Advisers of Sector, Burgomasters, Armed forces required of the population under their control to raise dogs on the level of each establishment, so that by their sense of smell they bark before the arrival of Inkotanyi soldiers, and that the population has time to run away. These practices made perish a considerable number of citizens; the tactics of skirting of the governmental positions made it possible to avoid the centers of the population, and while believing to flee, fell into the claws from Inkotanyi which killed everyone, thanks to the darkness of the night, without letting some only one escape, under pretext which they were IBIPINGA (adverse) who preferred to die for the MRND. Even if I inserted this paragraph in this stage, each time Inkotanyi had carried out the skirting of the positions of the army, they started by exterminating the local population
To trap with mines, to draw on buses which transported travelers in the frontier areas
are acts which were carried out on a daily basis, so much so that mines were trapped in potato fields, to cut the legs to the peasants and definitively to prevent them from
returning to their fields. This was sad. Peasants, obliged to leave their grounds, had nothing to eat, or simply corn and beans lived having given up their banana plantation, without being able to return to harvest their manioc (cassava roots), their potatoes, or their vegetables. It had rather to be made so that the moved populations have occasions
to return to them. The majority returned to recover clothing. And yet, the forces armed of the FPR had received the order to kill them without another form of lawsuit. What could generate the fact of making die people of hunger, by preventing them from collecting the fruits of their work, if it is not the genocide? Who wants to know why the genocide was possible should once again start by studying this case (3).
4. The camps of people moved by the war had been established in well-known localities
as those which I will quote:
Rukomo-Rwebare (Muvumba), this camp I saw it several times of my eyes, was destroyed by heavy weapons like the mortars of 120 mm, that of Rukara, and that of Mutagomwa were destroyed with the Lance Rockets Multiple (LRM) 107 mm, the Katiusha in Murangira unit, time with other like the Commander Kyakabale of the Ugandan army lent it to Inkotanyi the mortars 23 mm, 33 mm, 14.5 mm to destroy the camps full with displaced people. It happened that we are not able any more to have explanation on the thoughts of our chiefs. We were numerous to note that the sufferings caused to the
population were sufficiently atrocious not to have to add of them others by the use of the heavy weapons. This camp like many others, following the example of that of Runaba, Nkumba, Muhambo were used by way to test like fields of drive for the shootings of anti-aircraft missiles. One drew from the missiles flamers over the camps, and those who were involved to fire the transportable missiles with the hand, found a ground of implementation. Often the missiles exploded in the center of the camp to kill the
occupants (displaced people). These threats forced the displaced to move again, to go to seek refuge possible further. Some moved arrived at Nyacyonga, close to Kigali, after being dislodged more than 20 times in less than two years. It was impossible that families arrive in their entirety at Nyacyonga, some displaced who fled the camps destroyed with the heavy weapon buried there initially the members of their families killed: a child, a woman, a husband or a brother, before leaving. Here another explanation of the massive participation in the genocide (4).
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