UK mother denies plotting against Rwanda’s leader

A pregnant mother from the UK has appeared in court in Rwanda on charges of spreading state secrets, trying to harm President Paul Kagame and attempting to form an armed group.

Violette Uwamahoro, a Rwandan-British national, pleaded not guilty to the charges when she appeared in the High Court in the capital, Kigali.

She looked calm during her court appearance, and smiled as she left the building, reports journalist Phocas Ndayizera from the scene.

She was remanded in police custody until her bail hearing, which is scheduled for Monday.

Mrs Uwamahoro, a youth worker from Leeds who is five months pregnant with her third child, was arrested on Valentine’s Day after travelling to Rwanda for a family funeral.

Her husband Faustin Rukundo said his wife is being victimised because of his role as a political activist.

He is involved with the Rwandan National Congress opposition group.

Mrs Uwamahoro’s co-accused, a policeman, pleaded guilty to the charges, saying they had conversations on WhatsApp about “conspiring” to overthrow the government.

President Paul Kagame has been accused by his crtics of leading a repressive regime, which he denies.

Mrs Uwamahoro’s children, Samuel, aged eight, and David, 10, have written to UK Prime Minister Theresa May and Mr Kagame in a bid to help their mother.

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