EXTERNAL AI Index: AFR 47/25/95
11 December 1995
Further information on UA 268/95 (AFR 47/23/95, 30 November 1995) - Fear for
safety and new concern: "Disappearance"
RWANDAJean RUBADUKA, magistrate and human rights activist
Abbé André SIBOMANA, acting bishop and human rights activist
new name: Jean-Baptiste BARAMBIRWA, human rights activist
Jean-Baptiste Barambirwa, president of the leading collective of human rights
organizations in Rwanda, "disappeared" during the night of 10/11 December 1995.
Amnesty International fears for his safety.
His "disappearance" occurred immediately after a conference on human rights
held in the capital Kigali on the occasion of Human Rights Week in Rwanda.
Jean-Baptiste Barambirwa had attended the conference and in his closing speech,
had spoken openly about the present human rights situation in Rwanda. He
described Rwanda as a country where the rule of law had never existed and
denounced the absence of justice. He also referred to ongoing human rights
violations, particularly the situation in the prisons, where around 60,000
people - many of them arbitrarily arrested - are detained in inhuman conditions.
He also made reference to torture, "disappearances" and detentions in secret
Jean-Baptiste Barambirwa left the conference alone at around 7.30pm. He failed
to return home that night and there was still no news of him the following
In October 1995, Jean-Baptiste Barambirwa was elected President of the Collectif
des Ligues et Associations de Défense des Droits de l'Homme (CLADHO), Collective
of human rights leagues and associations (Jean Rubaduka is CLADHO's former
President). CLADHO has written to the head of the Gendarmerie in Rwanda asking
for news of Jean-Baptiste Barambirwa's whereabouts.
PLEASE CONTINUE ACTION ON BEHALF OF JEAN RUBADUKA AND ABBÉ SIBOMENA AS
RECOMMENDED IN ORIGINAL ACTION, AND IN ADDITION: Please send
telegrams/telexes/faxes/express/airmail letters in French, English or your
- expressing concern for the safety of Jean-Baptiste Barambirwa after his
"disappearance" on the evening of 10 December
- calling for an immediate investigation to establish his whereabouts, and
for this information to be made public;
- repeating your calls on the authorities to put an end to the pattern of
intimidation of human rights activists in Rwanda and asking them to honour
their public declaration to protect human rights by ensuring that such activists
can operate freely, without fear for their lives.
Président Pasteur Bizimungu
Présidence de la République
BP 15, Kigali, Rwanda
Faxes: +250 83975; 84769
Telegrams: President Bizimungu, Kigali, Rwanda