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France Sentences Rwandan for Genocide Role

A court in France has delivered the country's first ever conviction for genocide, sentencing a former Rwandan soldier to 25 years in prison.

The Paris court found Pascal Simbikangwa guilty of genocide and complicity for crimes against humanity for his role in the 1994 massacre in Rwanda.

The trial was the first in France to punish those responsible for the 100 days of violence that left an estimated 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus dead.

France has faced criticism for not doing enough to stop the genocide in its former colony and for providing a haven for those who carried out the massacre.

Simbikangwa was arrested in 2008 on the French island of Mayotte in the Indian Ocean.

Under French law, Rwandans suspected of involvement in the genocide can be tried in a French court. Other European countries have held similar trials.

Simbikangwa, who has been a paraplegic since a 1986 car accident, denied the charges against him during the trial.

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