Africa We Want

SURVIE, A FRENCH NGO FILES COMPLAINT OVER TWO FRENCH OFFICERS SLAIN IN RWANDA DURING TUTSI .

The Survie NGO that advocates for better relations between France and Africa, and two relatives, on Monday sought answers over the deaths of two military police members Rene Maier and Alain Didot, as well as his wife Gilda Didot, in the Rwandan capital Kigali. Exactly three decades on, “this complaint aims to establish responsibilities in the death of two French gendarmes and the wife of one of them in Kigali [...] in circumstances that remain mysterious,” Survie said in a statement. Source AFP/RFI

Why has France remained silent regarding the killing of its three citizens in Kigali ? Could its silence be attributed to their potential knowledge of French involvement in the Rwandan conflict ?

It claimed a French intelligence note that year suggested “the three French nationals could have been eliminated after they were witnesses” of the 6 April, 1994 assassination of Hutu president Juvenal Habyarimana.

The downing of his plane over Kigali triggered the genocide that killed more than one million victims, between April and July 1994, mostly from the Tutsi group but also the Hutu in opposition.

The massacres of Tutsis started immediately after Habyarimana’s assassination.

A day after that, the Didot couple were reported dead on 8 April, 1994.

Didot, a radio technician, had arrived in 1992 to advise the Rwandan army and secure the French embassy’s communications, according to the complaint. Maier, an assistant technician, arrived in 1993.

’No autopsy or investigation’

UN peacekeepers from Belgium retrieved their bodies on 12 April. They found the remains of Maier the next day.

The plaintiffs say the bodies were then repatriated via the Central African Republic, where death certificates were issued. But they say a total of eight inconsistent certificates exist for the three people.

No autopsy or investigation was ever conducted, they say.

Surprisingly, the French government and its Operation Turquoise forces have refrained from acknowledging them for a span of three decades.

Author: MANZI
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