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A complaint was filed against Paul Barril for complicity in the Rwandan Genocide

Rwanda Courtroom

French Translation of the week

Former French gendarme now in private security, Captain Paul Barril is the subject of a complaint for "complicity in genocide" for his controversial role in the genocide of Tutsis in Rwanda.

"Ancien gendarme français reconverti dans la sécurité privée, le capitaine Paul Barril fait l'objet d'une plainte pour « complicité de génocide » pour  son rôle controversé dans le génocide des Tutsis du Rwanda."

This article has been translated from French. Click here to read the original version on Jeune Afrique

This menace has been pending for a while now. The tribulations of Paul Barril – who worked in the GIGN and then the anti-terrorist cell of the Elysee before becoming private security - raise suspicion since 1994. On Monday, June 24, the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), the League of Human Rights (LDH) and Survival Association filed a complaint against former super gendarme for "complicity in genocide" before the high court of Paris.

He is accused of signing, on May 28, 1994 - while an embargo on deliveries of weapons to Rwanda was declared by the UN ten days earlier - an agreement to supply arms, ammunition, training and coaching with Jean Kambanda, the Rwandan Prime Minister of the interim government. The same government was orchestrating for almost two months the genocide of Tutsis.

This is the first time that a French national is the subject of a lawsuit for complicity in the Rwandan genocide. Previous complaints from survivors - currently in trial in Paris - were made "against X". But repeated interventions by Paul Barril in the franco-rwandan case, elements of which have been exhumed gradually, leave room for potential legal action against him; the crime of genocide is undisputable.

According to lawyer Patrick Baudouin, honorary president of the FIDH, "the complaint is based primarily on the contract of May 28, 1994,  for which he received a first installment, which is an indication that the implementation had begun." If the preliminary investigation leads to the opening of a judicial inquiry, it is up to the French judiciary to document the exact role played by Paul Barril working for a regime that led to the extermination of its own population.

They may, for this purpose, benefit from the extensive documentation found by their colleague Marc Trévidic following a search conducted at Barril'sA home in June 2012. According to our information, if these documents do not contribute decisively in the matter being referred (which deals exclusively with the April 6,1994 attack against the plane of Rwandan President Habyarimana), they would, however, likely support a claim for complicity in genocide.

Besides the personal role of the captain working for the Rwandan authorities, dominated by Hutus at the time, one of the underlying issues of legal information that may be opened as a result of the preliminary investigation is to establish the exact relationship at the time between Paul Barril " the private", the Elysee and the French secret service. "This is something that we do not neglected, said Patrick Baudouin. Clearly, one cannot but wonder about the relationship between Paul Barril and the French authorities as well as the acceptance he received from them."

Between October 1990 and July 1994, Paul Barril repeatedly worked with the Hutu regime on - information, training, arms deliveries -, the case was regarded as highly sensitive in Paris. In this regard, it was followed by a small group of insiders. It will be up to the French court to determine whether a "freelance" could intervene for so long without getting a green light from the highest level of authority.




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