Monday, February 07, 2011

Mubarak broke UN embargo in $6M arms to Rwanda deal?

[find a summary of this material here]
I have just read this story in Ennahar, an Algerian newspaper. The link was tweeted by Frank Habineza* (@Habinef), Leader of the Democratic Green Party of Rwanda,  and I've pasted it below, cutting it down to its essentials, and a few tidyings-up which I have [put in] for clarity.

The conclusions are affected by ongoing research posted below.

Hosni Mubarak broke UN arms embargo  

This information is related to arms sales contracts made by Hosni Mubarak and his Minister of Defense and Military Production Mohammed Hussein Tantawi, according to secret U.S. intelligence documents and other [documents] from United Nations Institutions and International Criminal Court.

Dated January 11, 1994, while war raged in Rwanda between Tutsis and Hutus, Rwanda's ambassador in Cairo sent a letter to Tantawi, asking him to prepare for hosting a military delegation from Rwanda, including Colonel Gratien Kabiligi, head of the delegation and head of operations at the General Staff of the Rwandan army, and Lt. Col. Cyprien Kayumba, Director of Finance, Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Rwanda. 
Delegations will arrive in Cairo during the week of 1/17 to 1/23/1994 for a period of one week. 

What was surprising in that letter from the Ambassador of Rwanda is that it was for the Egyptian Minister of Defense Mohamed Hussein Tantawi through an official at the Egyptian Ministry of Defense, General Seyed Sami, in his capacity responsible for relations with friendly countries, instead of being sent according to the diplomatic norms.

This letter comes after a letter sent by the Office of Egyptian Ministry of Defense who expressed his agreement for the sale of arms to the Rwandan army while the United Nations had imposed an embargo on arms sales to Rwanda during the period of civil war where massacres were committed by the Rwandan army against Hutu tribe and the Tutsi rebels.

A correspondence was forwarded to the Egyptian Embassy in Kigali by the ICC on the movement of Rwandan military officials in Cairo under the arms purchase agreements in Egypt. The Egyptian ambassador, Djamel Chahine, in a letter, pretended to ignore the repeated trips to Cairo by Colonel Gratien Kabiligi.

Another secret document from the inquiry of the French parliament on the involvement of France and some Egyptian officials in the sale of arms to Rwanda shows operations transfer of large sums from Cairo to Credit Lyonnais Bank in France. The commission asked officials of the bank but they refused to talk under the bank secrecy.

Other documents of U.S. intelligence, dated March 31, 1994, reveal the involvement of Egypt in arms deals for the Rwandan army, accused of war crimes. According to the document, after the pressures on France, Germany and Belgium to respect the decisions of the UN arms embargo on Rwanda, the latter resorted to Egypt and Israel.

A contract, according to the document, signed by Hosni Mubarak with the Rwandan army March 30, 1992 for $ 6 million.

The contract included significant quantities of heavy and light weapons, ammunition and explosives.
Ismail Fellah
*Frank is also:
Founding President, Democratic Green Party of Rwanda,
President of the African Greens Federation,
Co-Africa Representative to Global Greens Coordination (GGC)


Clearly this needs further research. The key thing is that the UN now comes into the picture, and may be able to exert some leverage in the vital space between Mobarak's bum and the Presidential chair.

The UN embargo  from UNSC Resolution 918, came in to force on 17 May 1994, so Mubarak may have got his order in before, though the physical deliveries may have come in during the sanction period.

The relevant paragraphs of UNSC Resolution 198 
13. ...all States shall prevent the sale or supply to Rwanda by
their nationals or from their territories or using their flag vessels or
aircraft of arms and related matériel of all types, including weapons and
ammunition, military vehicles and equipment, paramilitary police equipment and
spare parts;
15. Calls upon all States, including States not Members of the United
Nations, and international organizations to act strictly in accordance with the
provisions of the present resolution, notwithstanding the existence of any
rights or obligations conferred or imposed by any international agreement or any
contract entered into or any licence or permit granted prior to the date of the
adoption of this resolution;
Therefore it is clear that Mubarak's regime broke the law in sending arms to Rwanda, since although the initial deals may have been set up in January 1994, the shipments would have been going in after May17th.
Incidentally, in researching this I found also on the Ennahar site: 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

mubarak should listen to the people and end his presidency.
visitGeneration PCs For Great Laptops