Mbarushimana's anti-government group is blamed for mass rapes in the DRC province of Kivu

French authorities have arrested the alleged leader of a Rwandan group accused of mass rapes and killings in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Callixte Mbarushimana was arrested in Paris after a sealed warrant was issued for his arrest, the International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor said on Monday.

Mbarushimana is suspected to be the leader of a group called the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda - known widely by its French acronym  FDLR - which is accused of having carried out hundreds of rapes in the DRC province of Kivu.

The FDLR is made up of mainly Rwandan Hutu fighters or Interahamwe, who are blamed for the 1994 genocide and have been sheltering in neighbouring DRC.

The ICC, based in The Hague, says Mbarushimana is wanted for 11 counts of crimes against humanity and war crimes, including killings, rape, persecution based on gender and extensive destruction of property committed by the FDLR during most of 2009.

Source: Agencies