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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Rwanda gov’t dismisses report saying Rwandans living in fear

KIGALI, (Xinhua) -- Rwanda Tuesday dismissed as baseless a report by Amnesty International which said that there is a climate of fear in the east African country ahead of next month’s presidential elections.

The report said that since the ruling Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) took power 23 years ago, Rwandans have faced huge, and often deadly, obstacles to participating in public life and voicing criticism of government policy.

Speaking to media in Kigali, Rwanda’s Justice Minister and Attorney General Johnston Busingye said that the report was baseless, aimed at attracting attention of financiers to the authors of the report.

He said the “negative information” being spread out there about Rwanda would not affect the country’s development pace.

According to the minister, some organizations exploit election period to come up with negative information to win funding.

“There is no climate of fear whatsoever and that is one of many baseless reports we should expect in this season. This is not the first and last certainly,” said Busingye.

National Electoral Commission of Rwanda last week announced three candidates for the August 4 polls, including incumbent President Paul Kagame of RPF, Frank Habineza of the Democratic Green Party of Rwanda and Philippe Mpayimana, an independent candidate.

Campaigns will begin on Friday and end on August 3, a day to the elections.

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