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Rwanda mineral export earning rises to
US 373 million dollars in 2017: official

KIGALI Rwanda (Xinhua) -- The Rwandan government on Tuesday said the country recorded 373 million U.S. dollars in mineral exports earnings in 2017, surpassing the target of 240 million dollars.

Francis Gatare, chief executive officer of Rwanda Mines, Petroleum and Gas Board (RMB), made the remarks on the sidelines of the meeting of Rwanda mining sector players in the Rwandan capital Kigali.

“The mineral revenues recorder last year was fantastic. The growth was largely driven by very strong commodity prices on global market, good prices of new commodities particularly gold and gemstone,” said Gatare.

Rwanda plans to install two mineral smelters to help add value to some of its minerals such as tin and coltan, he said.

The government plans to employ the separation technology in processing of coltan, wolfram and cassiterite that have been previously exported in raw form, according to Gatare.

He also said that the mining sector was targeting to generate at least 600 million dollars from mineral export in 2019.

Mining is Rwanda’s second largest foreign exchange earner after tourism, according to Rwanda Development Board.

The small central African country has issued 548 mining permits to 213 registered mining entities, most of which cover surface areas averaging less than 4 hectares of land, according to RMB.



Man in Norway arrested for genocide in Rwanda in 1994

OSLO Norway (Xinhua) -- A 50-year-old Norwegian citizen, originally from Rwanda, was arrested by Norway’s National Criminal Investigation Service (Kripos) and charged with genocide in his homeland in 1994, public broadcaster NRK reported Thursday.

The man will be detained for four weeks, two of which will be in full isolation, and he has no right to receive letters and visits, the report said.

Kripos believes there is reason to suspect the man participated in the killing of a large number of people, mainly Tutsi.

The suspect came to Norway as a refugee through the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) in 2006, Kripos said in a statement.

“A lot of investigation remains, including interrogation, review of seizures and further investigations. The case is being investigated with a goal to further prosecution in Norway,” said Espen Hanken, police attorney in Kripos.

According to the man’s lawyer, Brynjar Meling, he is not guilty.

“He has nothing to do with the genocide in Rwanda. It is a known case that there are a number of wrong and fake charges in the Rwanda complex. We have not come to terms with the charges yet, but he is aware that he has nothing to do with this,” Meling said.

The man, however, “wants to collaborate with Kripos, and therefore agrees to custody for a period of time,” the defender added.

Kripos conducts investigations of Norwegian or foreign citizens residing in Norway, who are suspected of committing war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity.

These cases are both complicated and time consuming, it said.

“The alleged crime usually occurred several years ago in countries that differ widely from Norway. The scene of a crime will often be old, destroyed or changed. Kripos is dependent on tight and close cooperation with the country where the crimes occurred, as well as other countries that are investigating similar cases,” Kripos said.


Rwanda arrests local government officials over embezzlement, nepotism

KIGALI Rwanda (Xinhua) -- At least five local government officials of Rwanda have been arrested on charges of embezzlement of public funds, nepotism and misuse of property, the Rwanda Investigation Bureau (RIB) said Wednesday.

Among the arrested officials were the vice mayor in charge of economic affairs and development of Burera district in northern Rwanda, the executive secretary of Burera district as well as a former mayor and a former vice mayor of the district, the bureau said.

All the officials are currently detained at the RIB’s bureau in Burera.

RIB appealed to the public to share information on public funds embezzlers. The spokesman of the bureau Modeste Mbabazi told local media that the suspects were arrested on Tuesday.



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