The Biden administration’s declaration that Paul Rusesabagina has been "wrongfully detained” in Rwanda is a welcome departure from nearly three decades of American indulgence of Paul Kagame, the country’s autocratic president.

This sets a useful precedent for other countries that have until now turned a blind eye to Kagame’s dictatorial drift.

Rusesabagina, whose role in saving more than 1,000 lives during the 1994 Rwandan genocide was the subject of the film "Hotel Rwanda,” was arrested in Kigali in 2020 after what his lawyers and family described as a rendition operation in which he was picked up in Dubai. He had been an outspoken critic of the Kagame regime. Following what human-rights groups denounced as a "show trial,” Rusesabagina was sentenced last fall to 25 years in prison on terrorism charges.