“Africa has taken its place on the global Pedestal”, this is Rwandan president Paul Kagame’s conclusion addressing members of the Institut Francais de Relations Internationales (IFRI) in Paris, yesterday, as he continued his two-day official visit to the European country.
“I think the answer to this complex question is that Africa, the West, and other partners must recognise and accept that times have changed,” so President Kagame.
Speaking about changing global reality, Kagame says that recent developments and the progress registred in Africa over the last 20years should give the continent a place in the new world order.Plus he added that it is time for Africans to get to know what role they should play in shaping the new world order and to ensure that they are well integrated in it and the West to understand this global reality.
President Paul Kagme’s first official visit to Paris since the genocide of 1994 aimed to complete the reconciliation with France, but has raised a stir in political circles and among the French soldiers, still accused by Kigali of involvement in the massacres of Tutsis. Several former military officials have deemed “insulting” that Nicolas Sarkozy, who had recognized in 2010 in Kigali, “a form of blindness” of France for not “seen the genocidal dimension” of the Rwandan Hutu regime then, welcome Paul Kagame Kigali maintains as its “serious accusations” against the army.
“He (Nicolas Sarkozy) has said, there are people who were against this development. I do not know this policy, the policy of evil. We have passed this kind of policy, that is despicable. The people who practice it are despicable. And what is despicable is wasting time, “ so Kagame.
[…]“We know that this visit does not please some people, but President decided to turn the page of painful relations between France and Rwanda “, said Saturday it had in the entourage of Nicolas Sarkozy. For the academic André Guichaoua, “this visit comes at a time when both parties are in a weak position”: Paris, which “seeks to break its isolation in the Great Lakes region”, where the little Rwanda remains a key player and Kigali, which is seeking new international support while its traditional U.S. allies are more distant.
His visit attracted protests for example when he visited Spain the prime minister refused to receive him in respect of the voices of the people, when he visited Belgium, the EU did not give him the deserved respect as a head of state following the demonstrations from the Rwandan opposition and their Spanish friends. Probably in France, Kagame will be shielded by the fact that he is visiting on the invitation by the French President Sarkozy, but drama is also expected especially from the officials in both governments.
The Kagame regime is also criticized for “repeated violations” of human rights by NGOs, who asked the French presidency will not sacrifice the issue on the altar of reconciliation.
The Rwandan opposition also expected to be heard by holding rallies in Paris, including Tuesday morning at a meeting between the leader of Rwanda and the French employers.[…]
It will be interesting to know how President Kagame and Minister Mushikiwabo will sit at the same table with President Sarkozy and his Foreign Minister Alain Juppe after the unfriendly words they exchanged some time back!