The IRMCT Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) today confirms the death of Aloys Ndimbati, one of the remaining fugitives indicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) and a notable figure in the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda.
Ndimbati, bourgmestre of the former Gisovu commune, Kibuye prefecture, and a member of the Mouvement révolutionnaire national pour le développement party, was first indicted by the ICTR in November 1995. He was charged with seven counts of genocide, complicity in genocide, direct and public incitement to commit genocide and the crimes against humanity of extermination, murder, rape and persecution. It is alleged that at the onset of the Genocide, Ndimbati traveled around Gisovu commune publicly calling for the elimination of Tutsis. Ndimbati, together with other local leaders including the fugitive Charles Sikubwabo, then organized between April and June 1994 attacks against Tutsi refugees in locations throughout Gisovu commune and the Bisesero area. Ndimbati was alleged to have personally organized and directed massacres and killings of thousands of Tutsis at locations including Bisesero hill, Kidashya hill, Muyira hill, Nyakavumu cave, Gitwe hill, Rwirambo hill, Byiniro hill and Kazirandimwe hill.
In July 1994, Ndimbati and his family fled Rwanda for then-Zaire, where they resided in Kashusha camp. He later traveled with some family members to Kisangani. In or around June 1997, Ndimbati returned to Rwanda via a UNHCR repatriation flight from Kisangani to Kanombe.
Following a comprehensive and challenging investigation, the OTP was able to conclude that Ndimbati died by around the end of June 1997 in the area of the current Gatore Sector, Kirehe District, Eastern Province, Rwanda. While the exact circumstances of his death have not been determined owing to the confusion and absence of order at the time, the evidence gathered by the OTP demonstrates that Ndimbati did not leave the Gatore area, and that he was never seen or heard from again. No reliable and corroborated evidence of him being alive after that time has been identified. Ndimbati’s death at this approximate time and place was independently confirmed by the National Public Prosecution Authority of Rwanda following its own investigation.
While the survivors and victims of Ndimbati’s crimes will not see him prosecuted and punished, this result may help bring some closure in the knowledge that Ndimbati is not at large and he is unable to cause further harm to the Rwandan people.
There are now only two outstanding ICTR fugitives: Charles Sikubwabo and Ryandikayo. Between May 2020 and today, the OTP’s Fugitive Tracking Team has arrested two fugitives, Félicien Kabuga and Fulgence Kayishema, and confirmed the deaths of another four fugitives, Augustin Bizimana, Protais Mpiranya, Phénéas Munyarugarama and now Aloys Ndimbati.