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World News: Kagame accuses France of supporting Rwanda genocide Black Habits Articles LONDON (Reuters) - Rwandan President Paul Kagame accused France on Wednesday of actively supporting the 1994 genocide in his country when 800,000 people were slaughtered.

Speaking during a visit to Britain, Kagame rejected French claims that he was involved in the death of a former leader -- an event widely regarded as the trigger for the genocide -- and accused Paris of fuelling the mass killing.

"It's France that supported the genocidal forces, that trained them, that armed them, that participated in fighting against the forces that were trying to stop the genocide," he told BBC radio.

"France did not at any one time attempt to stop the genocide," he added. "On the contrary, they actually participated in the period leading to that genocide in supporting the government of Rwanda."

France denies involvement in the killing and instead says its military interventions helped Rwandans.

Rwanda is now engaged in a bitter row with France over the genocide. Kigali broke off diplomatic ties with Paris last month in protest at a French judge's call for Kagame to stand trial over the killing of former President Juvenal Habyarimana in a plane crash in 1994.

Kagame dismissed allegations that his rebel army, the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF), shot down the plane.

"That is nonsense," he said. "I was involved in fighting the genocidal forces. I am a freedom fighter, I am not to be seen as a criminal."

The downing of the plane is widely seen as the spark for the 100 days of killing during which 800,000 minority Tutsis and moderate Hutus were slaughtered.

Kagame, a Tutsi, is revered by many genocide survivors because the RPF defeated the Hutu militants
Posted on Wednesday, December 06 @ 10:24:04 MST by jcohen



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