Rwanda: Opposition figure’s murder prompts safety concerns

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The murder of Rwandan political figure Sylidio Dusabumuremyi has prompted fears among opposition groups in for their safety.

Dusabumuremyi, the national coordinator of the FDU-Inkingi party, was stabbed to death on Monday by two unidentified attackers. He’s the latest in a long line of opponents to President Paul Kagame to have been killed or disappear and FDU party leader, Victoire Ingabire, says her colleague’s murder was politically motivated.

Safety concerns for opposition groups in Rwanda

The murder of Sylidio Dusabumuremyi has reignited safety concerns among opposition politicians in Rwanda. FDU leader Victoire Ingabire says he was killed in order to prevent the unregistered party from formalising its creation and discourage other opposition groups from forming official parties.

The government has denied any involvement in the murder and authorities in Rwanda say they have arrested two people in connection with the killing. However, opposition groups in the country and political activists outside of Rwanda suggest Dusabumuremyi’s murder is merely the latest in a number of killings orchestrated by the government – both in and outside of Rwanda.

While opposition groups say targeting killings and threats have been a part of Kagame’s rule since he assumed office in 2000, his government came under international scrutiny in 2014 when former spy chief Patrick Karegeya was strangled in a Johannesburg hotel on New Year’s Day.

South African investigators found “close links” between the murder suspects and Kagame’s government and the international incident counfounded claims by opposition groups that Kagame manages a network of political aggression far beyond the borders of Rwanda.

Featured image: By © ITU/J.Ohle, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=31853361

About Aaron Brooks

Aaron Brooks is a UK journalist who wants to cut out the international agendas in news. Spending his early years in both England and Northern Ireland he saw the difference between reality and media coverage at an early age. After graduating from the University of Chester with a BA in journalism, his travels revealed just how large the gap between news and the real world can be. As Editor-in-Chief at East Africa Monitor, it’s his job to provide a balanced view of what’s going on in the region for English-speaking audiences.