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Cartoon- France’s role in the 1994 Rwandan Genocide: a disgraceful legacy

The role of France in the Rwandan Genocide of 1994 has been a source of debate and controversy.



France actively supported the Hutu-led government of Juvénal Habyarimana against the Tutsi-dominated Rwandan Patriotic Front. 23 years after the genocide, the issue remains sensitive and controversial.

Last week three rights groups filed a lawsuit accusing France’s biggest bank of complicity in the 1994 genocide, allegedly helping Rwandan authorities purchase weapons despite a U.N. arms embargo. BNP Paribas, France’s largest bank, is being accused of “complicity to genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes”. The lawsuit has re-ignited the debate on the role of France and French companies during the genocide and the Rwandan Civil War. France actively armed, and supported government forces which contributed to the worsening of violence in the country.