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UK court drops extradition case against Rwandan spy chief

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Gen. Karenzi Karake

General Karenzi Karake was arrested on a warrant issued by Spain in June, angering Rwanda and African Union

A British court has dismissed an extradition case against Rwanda’s intelligence chief.

General Karenzi Karake was arrested on a warrant issued by Spain in June and released on bail. Following a hearing in London, a court official said: “The case has been discharged today.”

Under the Extradition Act, cases can be dismissed if “offences specified in the [arrest] warrant are not offences under the meaning of the [act],” the official said.

A Spanish judicial source had said Karake was accused of “crimes of terrorism” linked to the killing of nine Spanish citizens in Rwanda in the 1990s. But UK police said the 54-year-old had been arrested for alleged “war crimes against civilians”.

Rwanda reacted furiously to Karake’s arrest, with President Paul Kagame saying it showed “absolute arrogance and contempt”. The African Union called for Karake’s “unconditional and immediate” release.

Karake’s defence team included Cherie Blair, the wife of Tony Blair, who is an adviser on governance to Kagame.

 

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