Rwanda on path to normalisation of ties with France after genocide report

Rwanda’s president has insisted that Rwanda and France have a “good basis” to create a relationship, reports AFP news agency.

“I think France and Rwanda have a chance now and a good basis on which to create a good relationship as the case should have been… We are in the process of normalisation,” President Paul Kagame is quoted by AFP as saying.

The comment comes after a report acknowledged French responsibility over the 1994 Rwandan genocide.

The report, by French historians, blames the then French president, François Mitterrand, for a “failure” of policy towards Rwanda in 1994. The findings were made public in March after years of French official secrecy over links to the Hutus who ruled Rwanda.

France’s President Emmanuel Macron appointed the 15-member commission two years ago, giving them access to presidential, diplomatic, military and intelligence archives.

Among the archives are those of Mitterrand, who had close ties to former Rwandan President Juvénal Habyarimana, a Hutu.

At least 800,000 people died when ethnic Hutu extremists massacred minority Tutsis and moderate Hutus.

A Hutu elite ruled Rwanda when the genocide took place, in April-June 1994, but they were later ousted by the Tutsi-led Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) under Paul Kagame, who is now president.