accused of“public insult” by Aloys Ntiwiragabo, head of Rwandan military intelligence during the 1994 Tutsi genocide, journalist Maria Malagardis was acquitted by the Paris court on Wednesday March 15. In a tweet, the reporter from Release had arrested the President of the Republic, Emmanuel Macron, and the Ministry of Justice after an investigation by Mediapart in which Aloys Ntiwiragabo had been located in the suburbs of Orléans.
“An African Nazi in France? Anyone going to react? »then tweeted Maria Malagardis, on July 24, 2020. In her judgment, that The world was able to consult, the 17e chamber of the criminal court believes that the tweet “participate (…) of a debate of major general interest relating to the crimes committed during the genocide of the Tutsi and the judgment of their perpetrators”.
“This interpellative message was published by a journalist specializing in the issue, continues the room, and his reaction is part of his commitment and his positions in the public debate about the prosecution of the genocidaires. » The court also considers that“despite its significant insulting charge, it must be considered that this statement did not exceed the permissible limits of freedom of expression”.
Journalists “not specifically” targeted
This decision follows a hearing held two days earlier, for more than seven hours, still in the press room. Monday March 13, journalists Benoît Collombat, from the investigation unit of Radio France, and Laurent Larcher, specialist in Africa at the newspaper The cross and author of the book Rwanda, they speak (Seuil, 2019), were prosecuted for complicity in defamation.
Guillaume Victor-Thomas, a former employee of the Spairops company, accuses them of having disseminated the testimony of a humanitarian worker who said that he had witnessed, at Goma airport (Zaire) in August 1994, deliveries of arms made by him . The judgment will be rendered on May 23, almost a month after a new trial.
On April 20 and 21, Annie Faure, a doctor with the NGO Doctors of the World during the genocide, will appear after a complaint from Hubert Védrine, also author of a certificate in favor of Guillaume Victor-Thomas. In April 2019, on France Inter, she pointed to the responsibility of the former secretary general of the Elysee Palace in the Rwandan tragedy. “It was he who accepted or turned a blind eye to the delivery of arms and the protection of the genocidaires”, she said.
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