[JURIST] INTERPOL [official website] announced Thursday that Rwandan genocide suspect Emmanuel Uwayezu has been arrested [press release] in Italy. The former Rwandan clergyman had long been sought by Rwandan authorities in connection with the killings of approximately 80 Gikongoro province students in May 1994. At the time, Uwayezu served as director of the Groupe Scolaire Marie Merci college in Kibeho. INTERPOL Executive Director of Police Services Jean-Michael Louboutin praised collaborative efforts between Italian and Rwandan police forces that resulted in Uwayezu's arrest:
The arrest of Uwayezu demonstrates the power and effectiveness of international co-operation between police worldwide in obtaining information in relation to the identification, location and apprehension of fugitives around the world.
The success comes in light of INTERPOL's history of collaboration with national police forces around the world to bring those accused of war crimes in Rwanda to justice. Uwayezu, who remains in Italian custody, will be extradited to Rwanda, where he faces charges of genocide, conspiracy and other crimes.
Uwayezu's arrest comes two weeks after the apprehension [JURIST report] of another high-profile Rwandan fugitive, Idelphonse Nizeyimana, a former Hutu intelligence chief wanted for his role in the 1994 Rwandan genocide [HRW backgrounder]. Nizeyimana was one of four suspects sought by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) [official website] in order to complete its work. Last week, Nizeyimana pleaded not guilty [JURIST report] to charges of genocide and crimes against humanity.