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4 jailed in SAfrica for Rwanda general murder plot

September 11, 2014

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Four men found guilty of an attempt to murder an exiled former Rwandan general in South Africa were sentenced to eight years in jail, the National Prosecuting Authority said.

South Africa’s Kagiso Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday sentenced a Rwandan and three Tanzanians to eight years for attempted murder, five years for possession of an unlicensed firearm and two years for possession of illegal ammunition, the National Prosecuting Authority said. Spokesman Nathi Mncube said the sentences would run concurrently, according to the South African Press Association.

Two other suspects had earlier been acquitted for the 2010 shooting that injured Gen. Faustin Kayumba Nyamwasa in front of his home in Johannesburg.

Nyamwasa, a former top aide to Rwanda’s president, fell out with him in 2010 and fled to South Africa where he was granted political asylum. Nyamwasa and others accuse Rwanda’s president of ordering two attempts on his life, and the murder of another critic of the Rwandan government, Col. Patrick Karegeya, a former Rwandan spymaster. He was found strangled in a plush Johannesburg hotel on Dec. 31, 2013. Karegeya was also exiled in South Africa and was Nyamwasa’s friend and former colleague.

Rwanda’s government has denied involvement in the attacks.

Rwanda’s government is praised for making impressive progress in the delivery of public services since the 1994 genocide but Human Rights Watch says freedom of expression is tightly controlled and that the government has threatened critics and obstructed opposition parties and independent civil society.

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