Yesterday demonstrated Mukamurenzi with a group of refugees from Congo, Burundi and Rwanda in front of the Radisson SAS hotel in Oslo. The occasion was an educational conference in which Kagame is invited together with, among others, the Nobel Peace Prize Malala Yousafzai and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.
The protesters demand that the Norwegian government puts pressure on the Rwandan President Paul Kagame. His regime has been criticized for to develop in a totalitarian direction, and to extend the ongoing bloody conflict in Congo. Some of the refugees had traveled far from other Norwegian cities to protest against the president. They think he suppresses the opposition in the country and contributes to increased ethnic tensions.
In the first period of the Presidency, he was supported by Western leaders. Later military support is scaled down, and relations with the West have cooled.
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Fulbert Habiyambere is a political refugee from the Kagame government. « He imprisons and kills political opponents and he does not tolerate a free debate », says Habiyambere.
Kagame came to power in Rwanda in 2000. In 2010 he was re-elected with 93 percent of the vote. Diplomats and analysts were reluctant to approve the election because of poor implementation and lack of opponents.
« There is a lack of open debate in Rwanda. There has not been any real political reconciliation after the genocide », says Habiyambere. The Norwegian citizen Emmanuel Munyaruguru from Tromso has been missing since he was involved in humanitarian work in Rwanda last year. According to the protesters, he is now a political prisoner.
State Secretary Hans Bratt Skar says Kagame has been appointed as promoter in group for the MDGs by UN Secretary-General.
Education is important both for political and economic development, and is in itself a human right. For a country like Rwanda, it is very important to invest in education. The conference in Oslo gathers 400 participants, including several heads of state and ministers to attend important meetings about education.
The article was published by a Norwegian newspaper:
Translated in English by IKAZE IWACU