Pascal Simbikangwa

Pascal Simbikangwa is the former spy chief of Rwanda. Simbikangwa was an active propagandist during the Rwandan genocide in 1994 and was found guilty of crimes against humanity.[1]

Pascal Simbikangwa
Karago, Rwanda
Political partyMRND
Criminal statusIncarcerated
Crimes against humanity
Criminal penalty25 years imprisonment

Career and genocideEdit

Simbikangwa, born in Karago in 1959, became disabled in 1986 following a car accident. He became head of Rwanda's Central Intelligence Agency. Simbikangwa was also captain of the presidential guard while he was the chief of intelligence.[2]

He remained in these positions through the genocide, fleeing Rwanda in the late summer of 1994. Simbikangwa first fled to the Comoros Islands.[1] In 2008, he filed for political asylum in Mayotte. He was arrested on 28 October 2008 for falsification of papers. He was tried in France under a French law that allows anyone accused of crimes against humanity to be extradited there.[3]

2014 trialEdit

During his 2014 trial in France, Simbikangwa was described as a close friend and distant cousin of Juvénal Habyarimana, whose assassination sparked ethnic tensions in Rwanda. Prosecutors showed that Simbikangwa was the a top shareholder in Free Radio-Television des Milles Collines, one of the main Hutu propaganda arms, which called openly for genocide. Simbikangwa was accused and found guilty of creating lists of Tutsi and moderate-Hutu leaders who would be targeted for genocide.[4]

Simbikangwa was found guilty on 14 March 2014 of "complicity in genocide and complicity in crimes against humanity."[4] He was sentenced to 25 years in prison.[4]


  1. ^ a b "Rwanda ex-spy chief Pascal Simbikangwa jailed in France". 14 March 2014. BBC News. Retrieved 17 March 2014.
  2. ^ "Rwanda ex-soldier jailed for genocide role". Al Jazeera. 15 March 2014. Retrieved 17 March 2014.
  3. ^ Lichfield, John (15 March 2014). "Pascal Simbikangwa jailed in Paris: Rwandan genocide conviction could pave the way for more French trials". The Independent. Archived from the original on 2022-05-25. Retrieved 17 March 2014.
  4. ^ a b c Willsher, Kim (14 March 2014). "Rwanda former spy chief Pascal Simbikangwa jailed over genocide". Retrieved 17 March 2014.