The following article appeared in the RPF right wing newspaper Igihe on Igihe.com. The original article was in Kinyarwanda but it is here now translated from Kinyarwanda to English. To the translators’ views, this article is seen as a Rwanda arrogance and stubbornness towards the USA and a justification to the kidnapping of Paul Rusesabagina. It is an insult to the Senate but especially a character assassination towards senator Bob Menendez.
IGIHE NEWS WROTE:
Senator Bob Menendez Wanted to Take the Speck Out of Rwanda’s Eyes While Ignoring the Log in his Own eyes. Written by Iradukunda Serge
On 24 July, 2022 at 11:47
Bob Menendez, who represents the state of New Jersey in the United States Senate, recently wrote a letter asking his country to withdraw its helping hand from Rwanda and to stop all the aid Rwanda was receiving because ‘their leaders have committed many crimes, citing the example of the illegal arrest of Paul Rusesabagina’.
In a letter this man and his colleagues, members of the Foreign Affairs Commission in the
Senate recently sent to the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs in the United States of America,
Antony Blinken, showed that the United States of America should stop any partnership with
Rwanda and its leaders because the country under its authorities have failed to hold democratic values. In this letter, Bob Menendez and his colleagues said that they decided to write to Antony Blinken because of their great concern that the Government of Rwanda continues to violate the principles of democracy and human rights; so, the United States should reform its policy in terms of international relations with Rwanda.
This man who joined the United States Senate in 2006 continued to say that “President Kagame is a person who oppresses the media, violates human rights and those who oppose the government in the country and that is something that has become known everywhere.”
For us, it is defamation that these Senators continue to affirm that journalists and other people who opposed the change of the constitution to allow President Kagame to keep Presidential candidature were imprisoned, and that other went missing. These are statements without evidence nor facts.
The statements of Bob Menendez are contrary to the truth because the decision to revise the
Constitution of Rwanda in Article 101 came from the request of the Rwanda citizens through the Parliament, but Bob Menendez ignored all this and showed that it was a decision that was against the will of the people.
Another complaint that Bob Menendez raises in this letter is that the Rwandan government
enjoys and implements plans to harm critics who oppose Rwanda government, who have fled to other countries such as South Africa, Mozambique, Uganda, and Kenya and has even begun to commit translational repression in Europe and in the United States. Like other allegations, this too has not been supported by any evidence.
By continuing to show that his country is soft on the decisions that they take towards
Rwanda, Senator Bob Menendez continued to say that his country has ignored the role that Rwanda is playing in the problems of insecurity in the DRC.
This man says that Rwanda continues to support M23 and that its plan to destabilize the DRC was initiated when it sent troops there in the 1990s.
This shows how biased Bob Menendez is because he does not explain why Rwanda took this decision, and that for years Rwanda has shown the world that it is threatened by those who committed the genocide in 1994 and fled to the DRC and settled near the border with weapons. Bob Menendez supported the crimes committed by Rusesabagina like many others who continue to demand Rusesabagina’s release. Bob Menendez also ignored the harm done by this man imprisoned in Rwanda, for his role in terrorist attacks against our citizens including those in Nyabimata, insisting that he is a resident of the United States of America and he deserves to be released. He claims that Rusesabagina was arrested illegally. He does not say anything about Rusesabagina’s own words when he said he was going to start a war on Rwanda.
In this letter, he says that Rwanda is the country that has imprisoned a citizen (Rusesabagina) of the United States of America illegally, so they want to know what the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is doing to solve this problem.
This letter goes on to say that if the United States is aware of these crimes committed by Rwanda then the American Embassy in Kigali would not have put out a photo showing the head of the American military operations in Africa and the Chargé d’Affaires in the US Embassy in Rwanda with the President of the Rwanda and other senior soldiers in the RDF.
Here he was talking about a photo taken on May 19, 2022, when President Kagame received the head of US military operations in Africa, Lt Gen Stephen Townsend. He was accompanied by the Chargé d’Affaires of the US Embassy in Rwanda Deb MacLean and the Commander in Chief of the Rwandan Armed Forces, Gen Jean Bosco Kazura.
Senator Bob Menendez said that his country’s behavior towards Rwanda is not fair but that United States should instead implement tough measures against such a country.
Among the decisions that were requested to be taken against Rwanda are the suspension of all aid and other cooperation that the United States has with Rwanda and the suspension of visas for its officials, as it has been the case with other countries such as China and Belarus.
He ignored the log in his own eye.
The actions of Senator Bob Menendez are considered as trying to blame Rwanda for mistakes and crimes while he ignores the serious problems he has in his own country as a result of the crimes he has committed in corruption, bribery, favoritism and his rape accusation against a teenager.
In 2015, Bob Menendez was accused by the criminal court for corruption and the use of the power given to him by law for his personal interest. It is said that during his campaign, one of Bob Menendez main supporter was an ophthalmologist from Florida by the name of Salomon Melgen who gave him financial support of more than $750,000. Melgen also gave
Menendez expensive gifts and plane tickets to various vacation destinations, including the Dominican Republic and Paris, France.
In trying to reward him, Bob Menendez used his position to put pressure on the US government to make decisions that are in the interests of his friend Dr Melgen. Bob Menendez was also accused of having been involved in advocating for Dr. Melgen’s girlfriends to get US visas to visit him in the United States of America and renting his private jet to him whenever he traveled.
All these allegations led to the decision of Bob Menendez being temporarily suspended from the Foreign Affairs Committee due to the pressure from those who asked him to resign. Dr. Melgen was later convicted of embezzling $73 million worth of medical equipment and sentenced to 16 years in prison. However, it has been concluded those charges had nothing to do with Bob Menendez.
Before these charges in 2012, there were other people who took Bob Menendez to court accusing him of sleeping with four minors while on vacation in the Dominican Republic. These allegations resurfaced only in 2018 when the FBI announced that it was investigating them. Although Bob Menendez was later acquitted by the courts, the Ethics Committee of the United States Senate impeached him and ordered him to pay back all the gifts he received illegally because they were considered bribes.
Based on the accusations against Bob Menendez, one can question his integrity in these accusations he has against Rwanda since it could be tied to his own inappropriate behaviors.
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