ICC Investigating Rwandan Officials for Involvement with M23?

by Kevin Jon Heller

According to Enough!, the OTP is investigating the actions of M23 and “other parties” in the DRC:

In the aftermath of the March 23 Movement, or M23, seizure of Goma, the International Criminal Court, or ICC,Chief Prosecutor Fatoua Bensouda announced that her office is investigating “allegations of ICC crimes by members and leaders of M23, and by other parties taking advantage of the chaos in the region.” While documenting the M23’s crimes is undeniably important, a robust ICC investigation into the other actors responsible for international crimes being committed across eastern Congo could provide much needed leverage to the international community as it seeks to broker peace in the troubled region.

It seems highly likely that the “other parties” in question are Rwandan military and political officials, who — according to the UN — have “created, equipped, trained, advised, reinforced and directly commanded the M23 rebellion.”  Indeed, the UN believes that a Rwandan general, Gen. Emmanuel Ruvusha, personally directed M23’s recent capture of Goma.

It is probably too much to ask for the ICC to bring charges against Kagame for his support of M23. Nevertheless, charges against senior Rwandan military officers would go a long way toward dispelling Kagame’s carefully-cultivated image as a positive force in Rwanda and the region. I doubt anyone in the region takes that myth seriously, but Kagame still has many credulous supporters in the West.

That said, the ranks of Kagame supporters are thinning.  The UK just announced that it is suspending £21m in aid to Rwanda because of concerns about its actions in the DRC.


3 Responses

  1. So how do we reconcile this with the statement that Phakiso Mochochoko made in July to The Washington Post?

  2. Zach,

    Good question.  My best guess is that recent events have overtaken his statement — especially the attack on and capture of Goma, which has made Rwanda’s involvement in the DRC particularly obvious.  (Apparently, soldiers in Rwandan uniforms carrying Rwandan weapons fought alongside M23.)

  3. Response…there is time for every thng .now is the time of former complainant to answer they own cases.any one involve have to face the law to give justice to the victim of this economical related war

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