Rwandan bride, groom and wedding party forced to spend the night at the stadium for breaking Covid rules

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Newlywed bride and groom and their wedding party must spend the night outside in an empty stadium as punishment for breaking Covid rules in Rwanda

  • Police have reportedly cut off at least three weddings for breaches of Covid
  • Photos show the entire wedding party that is held in an open-air stadium after arrest
  • Rwanda has been praised for its response to Covid-19, but human rights groups have expressed concern about the measures the authorities are taking to contain the virus

A newlywed bride and groom were forced to spend the night outside in an empty stadium along with their wedding party as punishment for violating Covid rules in Rwanda.

Photos shared by Rwandan media outlets show that dozens of people, including the bride and groom, sat socially distant in an open-air stadium.

The party was reportedly transported directly to the stadium after police broke up the wedding over Easter weekend.

Photos show newlyweds in Rwanda being held in a sports stadium along with their wedding guests after police cut off the event last weekend for violating coronavirus rules

Photos show newlyweds in Rwanda being held in a sports stadium along with their wedding guests after police cut off the event last weekend for violating coronavirus rules

Reports suggest that Rwandan authorities cut at least three weddings this weekend

Reports suggest that Rwandan authorities cut at least three weddings this weekend

Reports suggest that Rwandan authorities broke up at least three weddings this weekend

According to the BBCpolice in the capital Kigali had stopped at least three weddings because they exceeded the maximum of 20 guests.

Rwanda’s response to Covid-19 has been praised by international authorities as the country has known only 22,684 coronavirus cases with a total of 311 deaths since the pandemic started last year.

With an extensive emphasis on contact tracing, the country mobilized community health workers and police and university students to work as contact trackers.

The government has also set up national and regional command posts to track cases to help control the virus.

Reports suggest the country is also using human-sized robots in the COVID-19 clinics to take patients’ temperatures and deliver supplies.

However, their measures have been criticized by activists who claim they violated human rights in the process.

Human rights groups have criticized the measures taken by the Rwandan police to combat the virus

Human rights groups have criticized the measures taken by the Rwandan police to combat the virus

Human rights groups have criticized the measures taken by the Rwandan police to combat the virus

According to the Human Rights Watchmany of those arrested for Covid offenses have been held in sports stadiums without due process.

The group claims they have been forced to spend nights listening to public health messages through loudspeakers and under the surveillance of armed guards.

One bride told the BBC: ‘[Spending the evening at a stadium] on my wedding day is a bad memory that will never fade in my life.

“Inflicting pain and shaming people in this way doesn’t scare us about corona or taking measures.”

However, Rwandan National Police spokesman CP John Bosco told local media that he made no apologies about the incident and said stricter measures will be taken against violators of the COVID-19 protocol.

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