Juvénal Habyarimana - Assassination

Assassination

On April 6, 1994, Habyarimana's private Falcon 50 jet was shot down near Kigali International Airport, killing Habyarimana. Cyprien Ntaryamira, the President of Burundi, the Chief of Staff of the Rwandan military, and numerous others also died in the attack. The plane crashed on the grounds of the presidential residence.

The circumstances of the crash are unclear. At the time, the Hutu Power media claimed the plane had been shot down on orders from RPF leader Paul Kagame. Others, including the RPF, accused militant Hutus from within Habyarimana's party of orchestrating the crash in order to provoke anti-Tutsi outrage while simultaneously seizing power. Since the aircraft had a French crew, a French investigation had been conducted; in 2006 it concluded that Kagame was responsible for the killing and demanded that he be prosecuted. The response from Kagame, who has since become the president of Rwanda, was that the French were only trying to cover up their own part in the genocide that followed. A more recent French probe, with a team of French investigators and two French judges concluded, in a January 2012 report, that the missiles could not have come from a military base occupied by Kagame supporters, and appears to exonerate Kagame's role in the assassination.

Read more about this topic:  Juvénal Habyarimana

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