Rwanda detains rebel leader from group behind deadly attacks: minister

KIGALI (Reuters) - Rwanda has detained a rebel leader from a group responsible for deadly attacks and the government has accused him of being complicit in committing terrorist acts, foreign affairs minister Richard Sezibera said on Tuesday.

The Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB) arrested Callixte Nsabimana, popularly known as Sankara and a spokesman for the National Liberation Front (FLN), which is the militant arm of political party the Rwanda Movement for Democratic Change (MRCD). The FLN has said that it was attacking Rwanda to oust long-serving president Paul Kagame.

In December, the FLN claimed responsibility for an attack on passenger buses in Nyungwe forest near the country’s border with Burundi. The incident led to the deaths of two people and eight others were injured, according to the Rwandan government, which blamed an unknown group for the attack.

“He has been arrested and brought back here,” Sezibera told reporters in Kigali.

“The so-called Major Sankara Callixte Nsabimana, who had been claiming fatal attacks in Nyungwe and elsewhere, who has been saying on radio stations that he was planning other attacks, we will not tolerate that,” he added.

Sezibera did not give details of where and when Sankara was arrested.

The RIB said Sankara is accused of forming an armed group, complicity in committing terrorist acts, conspiracy and incitement to commit terrorist acts, taking persons hostage, murder and looting.

It said Sankara’s case file is being processed and will be submitted to the National Public Prosecution Authority in accordance with Rwandan criminal procedure law.

Reporting by Clement Uwiringiyimana; Editing by Omar Mohammed and Ed Osmond