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Rights watchdog calls for probe on Rwanda police killings

Rwandan police have killed at least 20 detainees in custody since November, Human Rights Watch said Tuesday, calling for an independent probe into the deaths.

Rights watchdog calls for probe on Rwanda police killings

Rwandan police have killed at least 20 detainees in custody since November, Human Rights Watch said Tuesday, calling for an independent probe into the deaths.

According to a 37-page report by the New York-based watchdog, the deaths appear to be extrajudicial killings. However, police say the detainees were shot while trying to escape.

"Rwanda says it is striving to establish a state of law," said Alison Des Forges, senior adviser to HRWs Africa division. "Killing detainees is not the way to do it. The Rwandan National Police must ensure that the killings end."

The rights organisation said the killings "should be investigated promptly by an independent and impartial board of inquiry.

Human Rights Watch said it found that many of those killed in custody were linked to ethnic tensions that continue to simmer over the 1994 genocide and its aftermath.

Rwanda's police chief admitted to HRW that 20 detainees had been shot but insisted they were all killed while attempting to escape.

The rights group also deplored that Rwandan pledges to carry out investigations into the killings have not so far materialised.

AFP

Last Mod: 24 Temmuz 2007, 19:27
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