Nobel Peace winner Murad urges global fight against genocide

 

 

Nadia Murad

Nadia Murad. (Patrick Seeger/EPA)

A co-winner of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize called Monday for a global fight against genocide and sexual violence, pledging to be a voice for victims around the world.

 

Iraqi Nadia Murad said in her first news conference since accepting the award that she feels obligated to use her voice to defend the rights of persecuted people around the world.

“We must work together to put an end to genocide, hold accountable those who commit these crimes and achieve justice for the victims,” Murad told a packed room at the National Press Club.

The 25-year-old Murad was among thousands of women and girls from the Yazidi minority who was kidnapped and enslaved in 2014 by the group that calls itself the Islamic State. The Yazidis are an ancient religious minority who trace their roots to a number of small villages in a remote part of northern Iraq.

Murad was awarded the peace prize Friday along with Congo’s Denis Mukwege, a gynecologist who treats women victims of sexual violence.

Murad said she is honored to be a Nobel recipient, but said much more needs to be done to bring the perpetrators of the crimes against her and other Yezidis to justice.

So far we have not seen justice happen for the Yazidis, especially the victims of sexual slavery,” she said, adding that said she would like to see Islamic State fighters stand trial for their crimes.

In 2016, Murad was named the United Nation’s first Goodwill Ambassador for the Dignity of Survivors of Human Trafficking.

A U.N. investigation into crimes committed by IS was formed in 2017 and began collecting and preserving evidence in August. Trials of IS fighters conducted by Iraqi and Syrian forces have come under criticism from human rights groups who claim the proceedings are rushed, flawed and often reliant on confessions extracted under torture.

Murad also called on the Iraqi government and the international community to rebuild Yezidi towns and villages destroyed by the war against IS.

With little reconstruction aid, most Yezidi territory retaken from IS in Iraq remain in ruins. The high level of destruction combined with inadequate security forces on the ground has left tens of thousands of Yezidis stuck living in camps for displaced persons years after their homes were declared liberated.

Murad outlined plans to focus more on rebuilding Yezidi communities in Iraq going forward. “But without peace, even if we rebuild, life is not possible,” she added.

The peace prize this year comes amid a climate of greater attention to female victims of sexual abuse worldwide highlighted by the #MeToo movement. When asked about the movement and how it relates to her experience, Murad said she hopes all survivors of sexual violence feel safe to share their stories.

“My hope is that all women who speak about their experience of sexual violence are heard and accepted,” she said.

 By Susannah George | AP

The Story of Peter Uwimana

I had no idea this man carried such a moving story. Yet, we went to the same high school and would bump into each other quite often in Butare, the town we grew up in. Late last week, Peter bravely shared the ordeal he experienced during the 1994 Rwandan genocide against the Tutsi. Click to watch the entire testimony in French!

Credit: TheMukwende Youtube Channel.

How the Dogmatic Ideology of Forgiveness Can Harm Genocide Survivors

The virtues of forgiveness in many different contexts of life are manifold and well known. Forgiveness can encourage and enable healing, peaceful relations, improved individual and social welfare, and psychological well being.

But forgiveness is a personal choice and it must not be coerced, whether implicitly or explicitly.

It is not a panacea.

Its idealization as a necessary prerequisite for peaceful relations in post-genocide Rwanda is neither ethically nor psychologically fair nor is it healthy. Many genocide survivors do not feel any desire to forgive the individuals who raped, tortured, and murdered their friends and family members and who raped, tortured, and assaulted so many survivors of the genocide still struggling with physical and emotional wounds from it.

Many genocide perpetrators in Rwanda feel and show no remorse, have not repented, and continue to intimidate and attack genocide survivors and foment racist anti-Tutsi hatred. Over 100 genocide survivors have been murdered since the end of the genocide by unrepentant genocide perpetrators who maintain their Hutu supremacist annihilationist ideology.

While for some genocide survivors forgiveness is part of a personal process of healing for many others it plays no such role.

Choosing not to forgive does not necessitate being consumed by hatred and anger. One can behave peacefully and support reconciliation between Hutus and Tutsis and principles of freedom, equality, and non-discrimination without forgiving genocide perpetrators.

A refusal to forgive can be a powerful moral affirmation of the need for perpetrators to express true remorse, repent, and devote themselves to restorative justice to help genocide survivors rebuild their lives.

Even then, some survivors may choose not to forgive and this is their right, not something to be judged pejoratively.

The dogmatic insistence that survivors forgive undermines their freedom of conscience, creates tremendous social pressure on them which only adds to their own considerable psychological burdens as a result of surviving genocide, and is insensitive in the extreme by refusing to acknowledge that many genocide survivors do not even feel that it is in their power to forgive. This is because when perpetrators of genocide murdered their parents, siblings, relatives, friends, neighbors and other fellow Rwandans in those very acts they negated the possibility of being forgiven by the individuals who they attacked and whose lives they destroyed.

Many genocide survivors consequently do not believe they have the right or capacity to forgive for crimes committed not directly against them.

Instead of focusing on how survivors of genocide ought to forgive it would be far more conducive to promoting peace and reconciliation in Rwanda and genuine post-genocide justice if greater emphasis was placed on the necessity of genocide perpetrators to repent.

Article First appeared in the Huffington Post.

Noam Schimmel, Ph.D., is the Associate Professor of Ethics and International Affairs at The George Washington University’s Elliot School of International Affairs.

Can Genocide Survivors Forgive the Perpetrators?

Reconciliation and forgiveness became a trending experiment used by the Government of Rwanda and some money-hungry NGOs since the end of the Rwandan Genocide against the Tutsi. Soon, the neediest of the survivors became the mouses in the laboratory of forgiveness and reconciliation processes.

Today, no single month goes by without seeing the survivors being paraded hand in hand with their executioners, chanting forgiveness and reconciliation. Words cannot express a sense of indignation these practices arouse in me. Photos below appeared in the Rwandan government sponsored-newspaper, The New Times, recently.

survivor_stephanie_ukubereyimfura_holds_elysee_uzabakirihos_hand

Survivor Stephanie_ukubereyimfura_holds genocide convict Uzabakiriho’s_hand. Photo/The New Times

Genocide perpetrators_with the genocide survivors holding their_backs_as_they ask for forgiveness in Bugesera. August 21, 2018. Photo: Kelly_Rwampera/The New Times

A couple of questions remains unanswered.

Economically disadvantaged survivors in rural areas are exclusively the only ones participating in this forgiveness-reconciliation drama. Why is that?

Is it even possible to forgive the mass murderers Hutu who committed Genocide against the Tutsis in Rwanda? If so, who is well-suited to forgive?

While the answers to the questions above may vary from a person to another, one thing seems obvious to me.

The only well-suited person to forgive is the victim who was mercilessly killed. Since the victim is no longer in the world of the living then, the chance for the perpetrator to seek forgiveness is futile. Therefore, my question to those survivors who claim to forgive: Who are you to forgive on behalf of the dead? In what capacity?
Going against this basic logic is not only disrespectful to our beloved ones we lost, but it is also a grave insult to them.

Albert.

Corey Harbaugh: Somos Hermanos, We Are Brothers!

Watch Corey Harbaugh, a Michigan-based genocide educator, speaking at our annual genocide commemoration event,  in remembrance of over 1 million lives lost during the 1994 Rwandan genocide against the Tutsi.  If you would like to learn about one of the darkest chapter in human history through stories, poetry, and getting insight as to who we are as humans, then this video is a must watch for you! Click here to watch

Ends. Albert

Ubwiyunge mu Mboni y’Uwarokotse Jenoside

Guest post by Jean de Dieu Musabyimana:

Mugihe abacitse kw’icumu tukirwana n’ibikomere ryadusigiye, ubwiyunge n’intero iterwa buri munsi ngo tuyikirize. Harya ubundi uwacitse ku icumu yiyunga nande? Ahatari ubutabera n’imbabazi,  nta bwiyunge buhaba! Ibi byombi se byagezweho? Dore uko mbibona nk’uwacitse ku icumu…

Jado

Umwanditsi Jean de Dieu Musabyimana. Photo: North Dakota Studies

Umunsi umwe abana b’umuturanyi wanjye bararwanye, umuhungu w’imyaka 10 na mushiki we w’imyaka 12, umukobwa akomereka ukuboko, nuko aza yiruka aje kuregera se twari twicaranye ku irembo. Nuko kugira ngo urwo rubanza rutarogoya ibiganiro byacu, umubyeyi ati ngaho nimusubire mu nzu ndaza kubashyira muri gacaca uwakosheje asabe imbabazi. Umwana w’umuhungu ati “Ariko papa, ubu koko uradushyira muri gacaca kandi ntamwishe?!!” byarangiye duseka, dore ko ngo akabi gasekwa nk’akeza. Uru ni urugero rumwe muri nyinshi zerekana ukuntu jenoside yakorewe abatutsi yangije u Rwanda bikomeye, kugeza no ku ndiba y’umuco.

Ijambo ubwiyunge si inzaduka mu muryango nyarwanda, kuko riruta mu myaka buri munyarwanda wese uriho ubu usoma iyi nyandiko. Kwiyunga bikaba imwe mu nkingi zikomeye abanyarwanda bakoreshaga, mu kubaka ishyanga rishyize hamwe.

Igitangaje kandi kibabaje, ni uko iyo uvuze ijambo ubwiyunge, abanyarwanda benshi bahita batekereza jenoside yakorewe Abatutsi, kwiyunga bikaba bibaye igikorwa kiba hagati y’uwiciwe n’umwishi nk’uko inkuru ya bariya bana natangiriyeho ibigaragaza.

Jenoside yabaye izingiro ry’amateka y’u Rwanda. Mu bwana bwanjye ntangiye kumenya gutandukanya icyatsi n’ururo, numvaga ushaka kuvuga ibintu byabaye kera, yaragiraga ati “ Kera mbere y’ubukoroni mu gihe cy’ubwami…” maze ibya vuba bati “ Nyuma y’ubukoroni muri repubulika….”  Muri iki gihe jenoside yakorewe Abatutsi yahinduye ibintu, ni yo rugero fatizo rw’ibihe ku banyarwanda benshi: “ Kera mbere ya jenoside bavugaga, bakoraga ibi,…oya ibyo uvuga ni iby’ejo bundi nyuma ya jenoside,…. undi ati: “Njya nibaza aho u Rwanda ruba rugeze iyo jenoside itaba…”. Nanjye njya nibaza nti:”

Ese nyuma ya jenoside yakorewe abatutsi, umuryango nyarwanda wariyunze?”

Muri raporo komisiyo y’ubumwe n’ubwiyunge ya leta y’urwanda yasohotse kuwa 27 Mutarama mu mwaka w’i 2016, ivuga ko abanyarwanda 92,5% bavuga ko ubumwe n’ubwiyunge bwagezweho! Ikanashimangira ko inkiko gacaca zabaye inkingi ikomeye mukunga abanyarwanda.

Uretse kuba ndi mu batemeranya n’iyi raporo, sinzi niba imitima y’abagize iyi komisiyo yemeranya na bo ku by’iyi raporo.

Iyo mvuze ko ubwiyunge butabayeho mu muryango nyarwanda, ntibisobanuye ko budashoboka cyangwa butari ngombwa, ahubwo ni uko bwakozwe mu buryo butari bwo no ku bantu batari bo.

Duhere ku buryo numva ubwiyunge bukwiye gukorwa:

Hari imfunguzo ebyiri z’ingenzi zishobora kwinjiza umuryango nyarwanda mu Rwanda rw’ubwiyunge n’ubumwe ari zo:

Urufunguzo rw’ ubutabera

Bati GACACA ni ubutabera bwunga. Ariko se bwunze bande, gute? Reka dusubize amaso inyuma mu gihe cy’ubutegetsi bwa cyami, tuvuge kuri gacaca nyir’izina yahozeho. Iyi gacaca nibyo koko yari ubutabera bwakemuraga ibibazo by’amahugu, ubujura, ubuharike, urugomo, gukubita ugakometsa, n’ibindi. Nta mwicanyi washyirwaga muri gacaca, kwica cyari icyaha ndengakamere mu muco w’abanyarwanda, kigahanwa cyihanukiriwe n’inzego zirenze gacaca.

Umwicanyi akaba igicibwa mu muryango mugari nyarwanda, akaba igisebo ku muryango umubyara, ubwo abavandimwe be, se na ba sewabo kugeza kuri sekuru, bagahaguruka bakajya inama, bati dukwiye gusaba imbabazi umuryango wa kanaka aho umwana wacu yahemutse, dore twararumbije, twabyaye igihararumbo, dore cyadusize ibara.

Igitekerezo kigashyikirizwa abunzi, na bo bagahuza imiryango yombi, bati n’ubundi inda ibyara mweru na muhima, umwicanyi nakanirwe urumukwiye, imiryango yacu ikomeze umubano. Nuko guhina akarenge bigahagarara, ifuni ibagara ubushuti igafata nzira, agasozi kamanutse inka kakazamuka indi, imiryango igahana abageni.

Ese tuzi umwishi wacu?

Umwishi arazwi bidasubirwaho; Leta y’u Rwanda ifatanyije n’ Abahutu b’intagondwa. Bivuze ngo abarokotse jenoside dufitanye urubanza na leta n’abo yakoresheje mu gushyira mu bikorwa umugambi wayo wo gutsemba abatutsi.

Nuko Leta ishyiraho ubutabera bugamije kunga abanyarwanda, ikugiriye muri za gereza aho yabitse abafatanyabikorwa ba yo mu kudutsemba, iti maze rero mugende mwemere icyaha tubarekure mwitahire musange imiryango yanyu. Umugambi uranozwa, ku mugoroba abamotsi bajya ahirengeye bati; mugitondo kare nta n’iyonka isigaye, duhurire ku iperu muri gacaca. Byumvikane neza ko guverinoma iriho ubu atari yo yakoze jenoside, ariko iryozwa inshingano za leta nk’uwego rudahinduka.

Ba rukarabankaba baraje bahagarara imbere ya rubanda, bavuga ibyivugo byabo (ibyo bitaga kwirega), uwivuze neza agataha iwe yemye, yemwe bigera n’aho bamwe bivuga ibirenze ibyo bakoze ngo ayo mahirwe atavaho abaca mu myanya y’intoki.

Uwarokotse jenoside w’umunyantege nke agafatwa n’ihahamuka iryo joro akarazwa mu bitaro, maze abitwa ko bakomeje imitima bagira bati ibi si byo, bagacyahwa cyane, bati mubike amarangamutima yanyu kure kuko ubucye bwanyu ntibubaha ijambo.

Impozamarira k’uwarokotse jenoside yabaye kumusaba kubabarira, ngo umuryango nyarwanda ukunde wiyunge. Burya umuntu ubabaye cyangwa ufite agahinda birashoboka ko yababarira, ariko kubwira umuntu ukirira ngo nababarire, ni iyicarubozo. Nibyo koko hari bamwe bafashwe bugwate n’imyemerere nyobokamana batanze imbabazi, ariko wareba ugasanga bitarabunze n’abishi, ahubwo byabunze n’imitimanama yabo n’ukwemera kwabo.

Nyuma ya jenoside, birumvikana ko uwayirokotse yari atangiye ubuzima bushya butoroshye. Ntibyoroshye kubyuka ugasanga isi yaguhindukiyeho mu gihe cy’amezi atatu gusa! Ugasanga ntukitwa mwene runaka ahubwo uri imfubyi yo kwa runaka, ahitwaga kwa so hasigaye hitwa itongo rya so, uwitwaga inshuti ya so asigaye yitwa umwishi we, kugeza ku cyo witaga umusarane gisigaye ari imva y’abawe, umuryango wawe wari ejo heza hawe usigaye ari amateka. Kuri jye aha ni ho mpera nubaha bikomeye buri umwe wese warokotse jenoside yakorewe abatutsi, muri intwari z’ibihe, muri ikitegererezo mu kwihanganira ubuzima bushaririye.

Impozamarira

Mvuze ko abarokotse jenoside batahawe impozamarira, ushobora kuvuga uti ndakabije, uti FARG (Ikigega gitera inkunga abarokotse jenoside) yarabikoze! Leta zose zo ku isi zigira ubu buryo bwo gufasha abatishoboye bo mubihugu ziyoboye, ni muri ubwo buryo leta y’urwanda yashyizeho FARG kimwe n’ikigega cya MINALOC cyateraga inkunga abana b’abakene muri rusange. Impozamarira/INDEMNITE igenwa n’ubutabera, igatangwa n’uwakosheje hakurikijwe ibyo yangije, igahabwa uwakosherejwe.

Ushobora kwibaza uti ni nde ukwiye gutanga impozamarira?

Ku giti cyanjye numva ari aba batatu; Leta y’u Rwanda kuko yateguye jenoside, umuryango w’abibubye (UN) kuko warebereye ayo mahano ntutabare kandi biri munshingano zawo, n’abahutu bayishyize mu bikorwa.

Birumvikana ko uwarokotse jenoside ari we wari kwaka impozamarira, ariko ingufu za politiki zarushije imbaraga ijwi ryacu, duhara uburenganzira bwacu, na n’ubu amarangamutima yacu aracyabitse mu tubati tw’imitima yacu.

Urufunguzo rw’Imbabazi

Jenoside yasenye by’umwihariko abayirokotse, isenya n’umuryango nyarwanda muri rusange, imbabazi mvuga kandi nemera ni izunga umuryango nyarwanda, zitari za filime zisigaye zikinirwa ku barokotse ngo babunga n’ababiciye.

Nta mpamvu n’imwe muri iyi si yatuma uwatemye amajosi, atuza agatura akageza n’aho aturana n’uwo yahekuye ngo bikunde bigaragare ko aho bakomoka hari ubudasa.

Imbabazi abanyarwanda bakeneye ni izunga imiryango ikomokamo inkoramaraso n’abarokotse jenoside, ariko abo ba rukarabankaba batuje mu miryango yabo nibo batwambura umutuzo, ni ibihindizo bikomeye bidukumira kwinjira mu miryango yabo, bikabangamira za mbabazi umuryango nyarwanda ukeneye.

Gufata uwarokotse jenoside udafite aho yikinga ukamwubakira ku irembo ry’uwamwiciye, mu gitondo ugafotora uti ubwiyunge bwagezweho, iri ni iyicarubozo.

Inyamaswa yari ishonje bayitamika ikibuye bakuye mu ziko cyatukuye bayibwira ngo ni ikinyama, bakomeza kuyishungera bareba uko isambagurika, bati bite ko utamira? Nayo iti mire se mire umuriro, bati noneho cira, nayo iti ncire ncire akaryoshye.

Biragoye ko umukecuru w’incike udafite n’uwo atuma amazi wamubwira uti nguhaye inzu n’inka maze uturane udatongana n’uwakugize uko, maze ngo abone ukundi yagira, ariko se ibi ni byo bivuga ko ababariye? Nibwo bwiyunge se abanyarwanda dukeneye? Oya ibi ni ukubakira ku musenyi, umunsi w’isuri ntizadusiga. Mu by’ukuri ubwiyunge buracyari kure nk’izuba, ariko njya ngira ikizere ko uyu mwijima twatujwemo uzashira, izuba rikarasa, umuryango nyarwanda ukiyunga nyabyo.

Kugira ngo ubu bwiyunge bw’ahazaza buzashoboke, ngire icyo nisabira wowe warokotse jenoside. Ntihazagire uwikoreza uzamukomokako uyu mutwaro uturemereye twikorejwe n’iyi si, tuzabahe amahirwe yo kubaka amateka yabo, tubasobanurire tudasobanya iryo twabonye, rizababere urufatiro ruzakomeza ejo heza kuri bo no ku gihugu tuzabaraga.

Simbasabye kuko muri insina ngufi, ahubwo kuko muri igiti cy’inganzamarumbo gitemwa gishibuka, muri urumuri rw’ikizere, murakarama mugwire.

Jean de Dieu Musabyimana ni Umwanditsi w’igitabo” Love Above All: Forgiveness Of A Young Genocide Survivor”.

They Remember. Do you?

A Guest Post by  Milena Adamczewska

Men who killed me

Ten years ago, the book ”The Men who killed me” was published.  It gave 17 of the survivors (16 women and one man) a stage upon which they could share their photos, harrowing experiences, and narrative with the world, to bear witness to the crimes committed against hundreds of thousands of others.

In their strength and courage, they challenge the stigma of surviving sexual violence and living with HIV/AIDS.

Their stories have impacted people worldwide to the extent that it has motivated them to actively make a change in addressing conflict-related sexual violence or to speak out about their own experiences of sexual violence.

Gloriose

Gloriose, a survivor of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda.
Photo: Samer Muscati.

In the hundred days of genocide that ravaged Rwanda between April and July 1994, thousands of women and girls were raped. No one was spared. Grandmothers were raped in the presence of their grandchildren; young girls watched the massacre of their families before being taken as sex slaves. Boys and men too fell victim to sexual atrocities.

The sexual violence during the genocide was extreme, systemic and used as a very effective instrument to destroy an ethnic group. Those, who survived, are a living testament to our collective abandonment of them. But they also represent the promise of a transformative change, the voice that we should listen to and spread further.

Now, in light of the upcoming 25th commemoration of the Genocide against the Tutsi (April 2019), it is the survivors’ wish to put forth an updated edition of the book to show how their lives have unfolded in the past 10 years (see the statement of Marie Claire in the video below).

“The testimonials in ‘The Men Who Killed Me’ have significantly deepened my understanding and compassion for survivors of genocide and sexual violence. The haunting details of their experiences are unforgettable. To learn how their lives have changed since the first edition of this book motivates readers to continue working to support survivors in their journeys of healing.” – Samantha Strewchuk (undergraduate student, University of Winnipeg, Canada)

Marie Claire

Marie Claire, a survivor of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda.
Photo: Samer Muscati.

The survivors will be able to do so with the support of IMPACT, a Netherlands based organization working against human trafficking and conflict-related sexual violence, founded by Eefje de Volder and Anne-Marie de Brouwer.

In this project, IMPACT works together with the survivors in the book, the Rwandan organization Solace Ministries, Samer Muscati (Toronto University), Sandra Ka Hon Chu, and Wolf Legal Publishers; all previously involved in the coming together of the first edition of the book.

In addition to the 2nd edition of the book, the partners will develop online educational materials on conflict-related sexual violence and justice, that can be used as an interactive platform for course materials in universities and schools (including video footage of interviews with survivors), to contribute to the awareness and prevention of conflict-related sexual violence worldwide.

Click here to watch the survivors speak

The lives of some survivors have changed for the better and adding new content to the book and having online educational materials available will inform people all over the world of the survivors’ journey and struggles in their lives as well as their extraordinary strength, courage, and resilience.

Four out of the 17 survivors have sadly deceased due to the consequences of the sexual violence that had been inflicted upon them; a heart-breaking reality of the genocide that unfortunately also needs to be given attention. The other survivors still need our support, thus proceeds of the book will go to them, so that they can continue to build themselves a better future by, for instance, setting up their own businesses or providing education for their children.

To republish the book and create the educational platform on conflict-related sexual violence, IMPACT is currently running a crowdfunding campaign.

It is possible to back the campaign via their website https://www.impact-now.org/product/crowdfunding/. Donations of an indicated amount will be rewarded with gifts – postcards, prints of photos, bags of Rwandan Bèekske coffee, free books and access to the interactive educational platform.

Man who killed me

Show the survivors that you remember and care. Commemorate the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi and help guarantee “never again”.

Ends.

Milena Adamczewska is a Research Assistant at IMPACT

Uwacitse ku icumu rya jenoside yakorewe abatutsi ni nde?

Alice

Uwarokotse jenoside, Alice. Photo Dailymail

Kwitwa cyangwa kwiyita uwacitse ku icumu rya jenoside yakorwe abatutsi  cyane cyane kubatuye hanze y’u Rwanda bisigaye bisa nkaho ari umudeli ugezweho! Umuhutu wabaye mu nkambi za Tingi Tingi arandika igitabo ati narokotse jenoside yakorewe abatutsi. Umututsi wavukiye mu buhungiro i Bugande cyangwa mu bindi bihugu uvuganye n’ibitangazamakuru mu mahanga ati narokotse jenoside! Uwahunze ubwicanyi bwibasiye Abatutsi uko ingoma mputu zagiye zisimburana kuva muri 59 ati narokotse jenoside yakorewe abatutsi! None amaherezo, uwarokotse jenoside yakorewe abatutsi ni nde?

Nisunze Dr. Philippe Basabose, Umwarimu akaba n’Umuyobozi w’ishami ry’indimi, ubuvanganzo n’umuco muri Kaminuza Memorial University mu gihugu cya Canada, ngo adufashe gusesengura iki kibazo.

Dr. Basabose mu nyandiko irambuye yasohoye none arasubiza iki kibazo mu magambo yumvikana kandi atanyura ku ruhande. Uwacitse ku icumu rya génocide yakorewe abatutsi ni nde?Kanda hano usome inyandiko irambuye ya Dr. Basabose

Mu ncamake Dr. Basabose aragira ati:

Uwacitse ku icumu ni uwarigezwe! 

uwacitse ku icumu rya génocide yakorewe abatutsi, ni uwarigezwe, ni uwarihigishijwe, ni uwari aho iyo génocide yabereye igihe yabereye. Ni abo umugambi wo kumara abatutsi wacuzwe muri contexte y’intambara ya 1990-94 wari ugamije kurimbura. Numva ibi bitagombye kugorana kubyumva kubera izi mpamvu :

1) Génocide yigishijwe amanywa ava, yakozwe amanywa ava, ibimenyetso bifatika birahari, abo yakomerekeje baracyariho, ibikomere kuri bamwe ntibiromoka, ku bafite inkovu bamwe zijya zinyuzamo zigaturika, abandi benshi ingaruka zitandukanye za génocide ntizihwema kubatwara ubuzima;

2) Abayikoze batsinzwe izuba riva, bahunga izuba riva, ababatsinze barazwi;

3) Iyi myaka hafi 25 ishize génocide ibaye abayirokotse benshi, abayibonye batahigwaga ndetse n’abayikoze batanze ubuhamya bwinshi (ku buhamya bw’abakoze génocide wareba cyane cyane ibyavugiwe mu nkiko za gacaca cyangwa ubuhamya bwakusanyijwe n’abanditsi batandukanye). Mu magambo abicanyi bavugaga ntibigeze bahisha uwo bahigaga haba ku maradiyo, mu ma nama bakoreshaga, mu nduru bavuzaga bakangurira abahutu bose guhaguruka bakica abatutsi.

Dr. Philippe Basabose

Dr. Philippe Basabose. Photo/Aude Pidoux

Nta Mpongano

Niba ushaka aho akaga k’abahutu bishwe muri génocide gatandukaniye n’ak’abatutsi bicwaga barimo, utekereze kuri imwe mu ntwaro zakoreshejwe muri génocide yitwaga “ntampongano”. Umuhutu yari guhonga, akihakana ibiterezo bye, akambara uruhu rw’abicanyi akaba umwicanyi mu bandi ntiyicwe mu gihe umututsi nta mpongano n’imwe yashoboraga gutanga ngo ntiyicwe.

Wibuke ko guhonga kwariho ku mututsi kutari ku gukiza ubuzima ahubwo kwari ku kwicwa “neza” (gutanga amafaranga ngo wicishwe isasu cyangwa wicwe utagaraguwe, n’ibindi). Aha na ho unyumve neza, sintesha agaciro na busa ubuzima bw’abahutu bishwe muri génocide bazira ibitekerezo bya bo. Umuntu wishwe kubera yagaragaje ko adashyigikiye umugambi wo kwica njye numva ari umu martyr, ari intwari ikwiye guhora yibukwa.

Ese abo mu miryango y’abo bahutu barokotse ni abacikacumu ba génocide yakorewe abatutsi? Niba barahizwe, wavuga ko ari abacikacumu b’ubwicanyi bwakorewe abahutu batavugaga rumwe n’abagénocidaires.

Ubwicanyi bwa 59,…

Kwibaza niba ubwicanyi bwakorewe abatutsi hagati ya 1959 na mbere ya génocide yemejwe na ONU na bwo ari génocide ubwabyo ni ikibazo gifite ishingiro.Ese hagize usaba ko ubwicanyi bwakorewe abatutsi mbere y’iyi génocide na bwo bwitwa génocide bikemerwa, byafatanywa n’iyi génocide byose bikitwa génocide imwe cyangwa zaba génocides ebyiri (cyangwa zinarenze ebyiri bitewe n’inshuro ubwo bwicanyi bwabaye)? Kubera iki kibazo gishingiye kuri “bigenze bitya” (question hypothétique), nta gisubizo ngifitiye. Cyakora ku bwanjye numva uwabigira génocide imwe hari aho yaba ayobye.

Gucica ku icumu ni akaga. Si ishema, si ikivugo! 

Kuba umucikacumu ni akaga. Si ishema, si icyivugo. Umucikacumu wese azi icyo abana ku mutima. Niba koko hari uwumva na we ashaka kwitwa umucikacumu wa génocide yakorewe abatutsi atari we (nk’uko nagerageje kubisobanura), n’ubwo navuze ko atari ngombwa kugereranya akababaro, sinzi niba azi icyo arwanira? Sinzi niba atekereza akaga uwarokotse génocide abana na ko.

Kuko twacitse ku icumu, twamagane icumu nk’ikimenyetso kibuza ikiremwamuntu uburenganzira bwa cyo busesuye, cyane cyane uburenganzira bwo kubaho. Kanda hano usome inyandiko irambuye ya Dr. Basabose

Nawe andika igitekerezo cyawe munsi muri comment!

Ends.

 

Arrested for buying witnesses in a genocide case before the UN tribunal

Prosecutor, Serge Brammertz

Serge Brammertz, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) and Prosecutor of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (MICT), briefs the Security Council. UN Photo

Five people have been arrested in Rwanda for allegedly seeking to bribe and intimidate witnesses in order to overturn a genocide conviction at the UN tribunal in neighboring Tanzania, the court said Wednesday.

Contempt of court warrants for Maximilien Turinabo, Anselme Nzabonimpa, Jean de Dieu Ndagijimana, Marie Rose Fatuma, and Dick Prudence Munyeshuli were issued under seal on August 24, and the five were arrested in Rwanda on Monday.

The UN’s International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals has, since 2010, handled outstanding and ongoing cases from the former International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) that tried suspects in the 1994 genocide that killed around 800,000 people, mainly minority Tutsis.

The court said in a statement that the five had “offered bribes and exerted pressure to influence the evidence of protected witnesses” in the case of Augustin Ngirabatware, a former Rwanda government minister whose appeal against a 30-year sentence is due to be heard later this month.

“The alleged aim of these efforts was to secure the reversal of Augustin Ngirabatware’s conviction… for direct and public incitement to commit genocide, instigating genocide and aiding and abetting genocide,” the statement read.

“I wish to express our gratitude to the Rwandan authorities for promptly executing the… arrest warrants and apprehending the five accused,” said chief prosecutor Serge Brammertz.

“My office underscores our determination to stand against all efforts to interfere with witnesses and the proper administration of justice,” he added.

The five accused are due to be transferred to the court’s branch in Arusha, Tanzania.

Source: Daily Mail.com

The Plight of my People

A Guest post by Mireille Ishimwe, reflecting on the tragic passing of Isimbi Fabienne, the cause of her death, and what it means to other survivors. 

Isimbi

Genocide Survivor, Fabienne Isimbi, 25, passed away 08/30/2018. Photo/Igihe.com

The song Mbahoze nte by Uwera Florida was playing in my earphones today since I learned about the tragic passing of Fabienne Isimbi, a genocide survivor of almost my age. Ayiiii mbahoze nte? Ayiiii mbagire nte…Humura Jambo aramubona… ”How can I wipe your tears”? What can I do to ”alleviate your pain”? ”Take heart God has an eye on you”.  And the song goes on.

I never got a chance to know her in this life. I only read a few sentences written in honor of her memory by her family and the people who loved her dearly.

My heart broke as I read about the cause of her passing. She succumbed to severe convulsions related to injuries she sustained from the genocide-era.

I can’t stop thinking about her and the pain survivors live with,  on a daily basis. She was one-year-old during the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi. She lost her parents, she fought, endured, lived, loved, and was loved in return. Looking at her picture this morning, I saw her bright smile and her beauty. I can only imagine the void she leaves in the hearts of those who cherished her.

Survivors’ pain in Silence

In the middle of my emotional breakdown, I prayed that we don’t see more Isimbis in the future, but alas I am not sure of that. My heart bleeds for my fellow survivors. Life is difficult in general, but it is more burdensome for you, the survivors.

You carry it alone, you suffer in silence, you die a slow and painful death.

I see the scars in our men’s face, they mask it, they try hard to crack the funniest jokes, but the painful marks of genocide do not completely vanish from their faces.

I went on with my venting, and I said: God, isn’t it hard enough that we suffered the genocide, should we suffer depression too, poverty, diseases, loneliness, losing children, betrayal?

Many of us, survivors, see ourselves in Isimbi. The question is not whether what happened to Isimbi can also happen to us. The question is perhaps when and who is next.

As the years go by, we realize the magnitude of what was inflicted on our bodies and our souls during the genocide. We recognize the life-long assault against our sense of humanity. What can we do? I am not here to offer solutions. I don’t have any yet, nor am I here to look for pity.

Wondering between the world of the dead and that of living

I am here to just think out loud and to possibly ring the bell about the invisible wounds of every genocide survivor. The wounds of those who feel pain but who can’t put the finger on where their pain is coming from. The pain of those who remember the horrors of the 1994 genocide as if it only happened yesterday.

Borrowing from the words of the author, Antoine Mugesera, “Every survivor has a vivid memory that easily wanders between the world of the dead and that of the living, their past is immersed under an ocean of wounds that will never close”. We are the survivors of Genocide. It is deeply ingrained in our identity.

There is no doubt that the passing of Isimbi made our minds wonder once again in the world of the dead, thinking about Isimbi’s life and the meaning of ours. May her beautiful soul rest with God and may he comfort her loved ones.

Isimbi2

Fabienne Isimbi’s casket before funeral yesterday in Kigali, Rwanda.

A wake-up call to care for each other

As I was between those two worlds, the saying: “umugabo arigira, yakwibura agapfa,” came to my mind. The saying translates to: “a man should be self -reliant, and if he loses himself he dies.”  There is some truth in the fact that we as human beings should have faith in our abilities, but I disagree with the last part that suggests death when we err. We need each other more than we can possibly realize. We need a safe space. I know that sounds like a very western term to use but for lack of a better term, I will use safe space.

Therefore, fellow survivors, allow me to speak to you, let not my inexperience hinder you from hearing my voice. Let us pay attention to one another, let us go beyond our culture of secrecy, pride and self-reliance.

We need a safe space where we come as survivors of all ages, of all backgrounds, space where our stories are not deemed as “too much,” “too uncomfortable for some” “never-ending for others.”

We owe it to ourselves and to those we lost to:

“To lift each other’s spirit.

To be genuine and to listen with the intent to understand and to help if we can.

To show our soreness to one another without fearing judgment (tutaninurana/tudacishanyamo ijisho) and mockery.”

We alone know the courage it takes to wake up every morning, to develop the empires we built, to love our young families, and to impart wisdom in our children without the help of our mothers, fathers, uncles, and aunties. The most resilient people, I have had the honor of knowing are you, my people.

Let us collectively do something, anything before it is too late. May the Soul Fabienne Isimbi Rest in Peace. End

Written By Mireille Ishimwe.

A Key Pattern that all 20th Century #Genocides have in common

Herero activists. Photo/Reuters

The German government yesterday returned human remains of the Herero and Nama genocide victims from present-day Namibia. The remains had been stored in German’s hospitals, museums, and universities for decades for scientific experiments to prove the racial superiority of white Europeans.

As I read about this moving development, I realized that one key factor is strikingly at the core of all major genocides of the 20th century—Impunity.

Between 1904 and 1908, Germans massacred thousands of Herero and Nama people in what has been called the “first genocide of the 20th century.” No single German was ever brought to account.

A few Years later, the Ottoman Empire systematically exterminated Armenians by starvation in deserts—A mantra that Germans had used against Herero well before. Again, the Turks went unpunished.

Who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of Armenians?

Boasting about impunity, Adolf Hitler said on August 22, 1939 ‘’ who, after all, speaks today of the annihilation of Armenians?’’ and from there the impunity became a pattern.

If you think that the Germans’ Concentration camps and Dr. Mengele’s human experiments on Jews, were the Nazis invention during the World War II, you’re simply wrong.

Concentration camps were an old formula successfully tested by colonial Germany in Africa, before being replicated by Hitler in Europe over 30 years later.

The same is true for the genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda.

There was no need to reinvent the wheels in 1994.

The methods senior Hutus used to massacre the Tutsi back in 1959, the 60s, the 70s, and 90s were simply replicated to a larger scale by the second generation Hutu in 1994. Bariyeri (Street Checkpoints to track Tutsi), Ibitero (Killing squads) and dumping victims’ corpses into rivers are some of those methods.

It is, therefore, crystal clear that impunity is ultimately a key factor that all genocide share in common. Had the Germans been held accountable to the genocide of Herero, perhaps the Holocaust would have been mitigated. The same can be said of the Genocide of Tutsi Rwanda.

While I commend the German government efforts to revisiting its one-century old pattern of impunity, German should move a little further to publically apologize and pay reparations to the descendants of Herero and Nama genocide victims.  End

By Albert Gasake

Call for #Rohingya #Genocide Prosecution to Deepen China’s Support of Myanmar

JINPING

For its friendship, China expects to secure access for its companies to a resource-rich neighbor on the Indian Ocean and a strategic partner. Here, Aung San Suu Kyi meeting with Xi Jinping in 2017. PHOTO: DAMIR SAGOLJ / POOL/EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY

A recommendation by investigators that Myanmar’s military leaders be prosecuted for genocide over their campaign against Rohingya Muslims is dragging China into another fight at the United Nations. For Beijing, that could be a good thing.

 

The investigators’ report, released this week by the U.N.’s human-rights agency, gives China a fresh chance to shelter Myanmar’s military and political leaders from international pressure, drawing them further into Beijing’s orbit as the U.S. retreats from the region, analysts say.

Related Article: Xi Jinping at Kigali Genocide Memorial: Tribute or Hypocrisy? 

“The Rohingya crisis really creates an opportunity” for China with Myanmar, said Yun Sun, an expert on Myanmar-China relations at the Washington-based Stimson Center. “Now’s the time to show them who their real friends are.”

For the friendship, Beijing expects to secure access for its companies to a resource-rich neighbor on the Indian Ocean and a strategic partner in efforts to tamp down criticism of China’s more muscular exercise of power in the region.

The U.S. and other Western nations accuse China and Russia of using their veto power in the U.N. Security Council to scuttle punitive action against Myanmar for a campaign of violence that since last year drove Rohingya to flee en mass. When Sweden and the Netherlands called on Tuesday for the Security Council to refer Myanmar’s military commanders to the International Criminal Court, China and Russia urged patient diplomacy.

“Unilateral accusation or pressure will not help to solve the problem,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a regular news briefing on Tuesday. She denied that Beijing is blocking action but rather sees the Rohingya issue as complicated.

China has tried to facilitate negotiations between Myanmar and Bangladesh, where more than 700,000 Rohingya have fled, to secure their safe return, but there are no signs of progress.

The potential payoff for China’s leaders is worth the risk of being accused of shielding potential war criminals, according to analysts. China fears that allowing the U.N. to take a role in resolving the Rohingya clearances would set a precedent for U.N. involvement in other border issues, including long-running conflicts between Myanmar’s military and rebel groups along the Chinese border.

The rebel groups share ethnic and commercial ties to China, and Beijing would like to play peacemaker and resolve the conflicts on its own terms. China’s view “is that there shouldn’t be any international interference in ethnic conflicts in Myanmar, because that might affect what’s happening at the border,” said Nicholas Bequelin, Amnesty International’s East Asia director.

Myanmar also occupies an important role in Chinese President Xi Jinping’s signature Belt and Road plan to build infrastructure and deepen trade ties throughout Eurasia. A critical piece of Mr. Xi’s plan is a multibillion-dollar China-Myanmar Economic Corridor anchored by an Indian Ocean port at Kyaukpyu, in the Rohingyas’ home state of Rakhine.

Authorities in Myanmar are pressing to scale back the port project, worried it could leave the country too heavily indebted to China, and no agreement has been reached about the rest of the corridor, expected to consist of new roads, high-speed rail lines, and industrial zones.

“Beijing has a long wish list in Myanmar,” said Elliot Brennan, a nonresident research fellow at the Institute for Security and Development Policy in Stockholm. While Myanmar’s leaders are wary of China and may resist concessions on the biggest projects, “an acceptable, if unpalatable, quid pro quo for its support will certainly be found,” he said.

Beijing played diplomatic protector for Myanmar in the previous decade when the country was isolated and its military leadership was shunned by the West for resisting democracy and confining Aung San Suu Kyi, then an opposition leader who had won a Nobel Peace Prize.

The Myanmar junta eventually became leery of China’s sway. With political reforms and Ms. Suu Kyi’s release, Myanmar began to court Western nations and multinationals, eclipsing Beijing.

Still, China remains Myanmar’s largest trading partner, and, according to Myanmar government statistics, Chinese companies are responsible for roughly a quarter of Myanmar’s foreign direct investment.

China’s government has worked to rekindle the political relationship, including hosting a visit last year by Ms. Suu Kyi, now Myanmar’s de facto leader who came in for blame in the U.N. report for failing to use her position and moral authority to stop the violence.

More than anything, according to Ms. Sun of the Stimson Center, patching up ties with Myanmar’s military and civilian leaders allows China to regain regional prestige befitting an emerging superpower.

“There’s almost a psychology of revenge,” after Myanmar was coaxed away by the West, Ms. Sun said. “The mentality in China is, ‘Myanmar is right on our border. If we can’t take care of them, then who are we?’”. End

Source: The Wall Street Journal today 8/29/2018. By Josh Chin, Fanfan Wang, and Jeremy Page

Related Article: Xi Jinping at Kigali Genocide Memorial: Tribute or Hypocrisy? By Albert Gasake 

Can Myanmar’s generals be prosecuted for #genocide against the #Rohingya? It’s unlikely

Rohingya

A United Nations report into persecution faced by the Rohingya minority at the hands of Myanmar’s military said estimates of 10,000 people being killed in last year’s violence are “conservative.” (Dar Yasin/Associated Press)

What is the modern-day threshold for prosecuting war crimes and genocide?

The crimes perpetrated against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar have made that as much of a legal question as a fraught political one.

The UN fact-finding mission that interviewed nearly 900 Rohingya eye-witnesses concluded in a damning report Monday that the threshold had been met.

It said there is evidence that Myanmar’s top military brass, including the commander in chief, had “genocidal intent,” and should stand trial — either before the International Criminal Court, or a special tribunal.

It implicates, Myanmar’s de facto leader, for her silence in the face of atrocities committed during a coordinated offensive by the military on the Rohingya minority in the Buddhist-majority country last year.

Ten thousand dead, it adds, was a “conservative” estimate.

Legal politics

Myanmar vehemently disagrees. And because the country isn’t party to the ICC statute, the United Nations Security Council must refer the case to the court if it is to hear it.

This is where politics factors in: Russia and China have indicated they would veto any plans to bring an ally and a business partner before the international court.

It is partly the reason why the United Kingdom, the UNSC’s lead on Myanmar, said a reference to the court “would not be productive,” to “ensure accountability” or to persuade Myanmar to repatriate refugees. The U.K.’s representative made these statements despite concurring that the panel has provided “yet more damning evidence of [the Myanmar military’s] culpability.”

A year after some 700,000 traumatized people fled across the border to Bangladesh — the report is the most complete record yet of the evictions, murders and gang rapes members of the Rohingya community endured at the hands of Myanmar’s military.

Despite that detailed evidence, on top of a trove uncovered by other investigators, human rights groups and the victims themselves: the Security Council is a dead end, the legal threshold trumped by political considerations.

“This report is unequivocal about what took place and what must be done about it,” said Mark Farmaner of Burma Campaign U.K., a human rights group.

As the lead on Myanmar, Britain, he added, should push to implement its recommendations. “All they said is they’ll discuss it, not that they support the recommendations or that they will push for the UNSC to implement them.”

So will anyone ever appear in court to answer to such serious charges?

Back door to prosecution?

There may be another option for getting the case before the international court that relies more on legal arguments instead of political ones.

Earlier this year, the ICC prosecutor asked for a ruling on whether the court has jurisdiction to look at the very narrow issue of deportation: whether Myanmar forcibly evicted all those Rohingya people to Bangladesh.

“If the response is positive, then the Prosecutor can initiate an investigation and in due course issue arrest warrants against members of the Myanmar leadership that bear responsibility for the ethnic cleansing campaign against the Rohingya.”

Myanmar has argued against the court’s jurisdiction. The country “also sought to downplay the ethnic cleansing by saying that it is willing to allow for the repatriation of refugees,” Akhavan said.

But repatriation won’t be simple, he added, given longstanding discrimination against the Rohingya inside Myanmar.

It is a point that the panel report emphasizes.

“The gross human rights violations and abuses committed …. are also shocking because they stem from deep fractures in society and structural problems that have been apparent and unaddressed for decades,” said the report.

The panel, and many refugees, insist there can be no return until fundamental changes are made in how they are treated.

In the meantime, that underscores the monumental challenge of caring for nearly a million traumatized people living in difficult conditions in Bangladesh.

More pressure on everyone

While the report may not immediately deliver justice, or end their wretched exile, it could be the Rohingya population’s best chance at persuading the international community not to avert its eyes to their challenges both inside and outside of Myanmar.

“The report adds great weight to the issues of accountability and responsibility. And puts more pressure on everyone,” said Bob Rae, the Canadian government’s special envoy to Myanmar, who will be in New York on Tuesday as the Security Council convenes to discuss the matter.

It will also mean pressure on countries like Canada, which have used a phased approach that focused sanctions on lower rungs of the military, to aim higher, at the army commander, or perhaps at Aung San Suu Kyi herself.

That too is a political question, and countries will have to decide for themselves whether the threshold has been met for that.

By Nahlah Ayed, First appeared at CBC

https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/rohingya-myanmar-icc-war-1.4800734

Top 5 Rwanda Genocide Survivors on the move in 2018

Frederick Nietzsche is not usually my favorite philosopher, but he was right when he said ‘’ What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger’’. These survivors are different in many ways but they all share two things in common:

  • They miraculously defied death by Hutu’s machete in 1994 genocide against the Tutsi.
  • They not only survived but they went on to thrive by turning their dark past into a brighter future. Now, top 5 genocide Survivors on the move:
  1. Abdul Salam Nizeyimana
Abdoul Salam Nizeyimana

Abdoudul Salam, Nizeyimana. Photo VOA.

A toddler back in 1994, Nizeyimana was left for dead after getting a nearly fatal machete blow on his head. Although he carries both visible and invisible scars of genocide, the 27-year old survivor rose above his injuries. Today Nizeyimana is giving back to his community including to those who slaughtered his family. His job is quite unique; Nizeyimana is a Drone Operator, working for Zipline International, one of the world’s first drone delivery services. He heads up a team of professionals in Rwanda who launch and retrieve autonomous drones that deliver blood to remote hospitals.  Click here to watch his video operating drones in Rwanda and learn more about his story.

  1. Nadja Giramata
Nadja fobes

International model, Nadia Giramata. Photo/Forbes

Nadja Giramata (born Nadia Giramata) is a Genocide survivor who rose out of ashes to become one of the most successful international Models of African descent. Born in Gisenyi, she was three years old when the 1994 genocide of Tutsi broke out in Rwanda. She survived. But her mother, her brother and many of her relatives did not. Today, Giramata is a big name in the modeling industry working with the world’s leading model agencies in Europe and United States. Recently, Giramata appeared on the front covers of prestigious fashion magazines including Forbes, Impression and many more. Click here to learn more about the Nadja Giramata.

3. Hervé Berville

Herve

MP, Hervé Berville. Photo imburi.info

Hervé Berville, 27, is a naturalized French politician who survived the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi when he was only three years old. He was adopted by a French couple in the immediate aftermath of Genocide. His name dominated the media worldwide last year, when he was elected French Member of Parliament, National Assembly June 18,  2017. Berville is no doubt a rising star in French politics and a great inspiration to other survivorsof Rwandan Genocide. He won 64 percent of the vote, crushing his conservative rival by a big margin. Click here to learn more about Hervé Berville

4. Dydine Umunyana

Umunyana

Author Dydine Umunyana/ Photo credit: Dydine.com

Dydine Umunyana is another most promising genocide survivor on the move. Umunyana is perhaps the youngest Rwandan genocide survivor to publish a memoir. She is the author of the book ‘’Embracing survival’’ published at Umbrella Press, LLC, in 2016. Today, Umunyana is a motivational speaker based in the US State of California. Umunyana has recently spoken at Google and several universities  in the United States. At age four, Umunyana survived the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. Click here to learn more about Umunyana’s work

5. Eric Murangwa Eugene

Eric+Murangwa+Eugene+Investitures+Buckingham+HRkgGaASSLtl

Eric Murangwa Eugene poses with his MBE medal, at Buckingham Palace on March 15, 2018 in London, England. WPA Pool/Getty Images Europe

Eugene Murangwa is not a new name in Rwandans’ subconscious. He was a famous soccer player in Rwanda in the 90s. Murangwa came to the spotlight in March this year when the Prince of Wales awarded him the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE). This is the highest civilian medal awarded to people for outstanding service to the community in the United Kingdom. Following his miraculous survival in 1994, Murangwa founded Football for Hope Peace and Unity (FHPU Enterprise), an organization that is dedicated to Peace and Unity using soccer. The story of how Murangwa survived the genocide against the Tutsi was featured in the Guardian and other major outlets in the UK. Click here to learn more about Eric Murangwa Eugene and his work.

End.

By Albert Gasake

How A Genocide Criminal Got Arrested After 24years Hiding Under Fake Name

hatekimana

Genocide convict Gervais Hategekimana, arrested on 8/24/2018 in Rwanda. Photo: Igihe.com

Since 1994 Hategekimana Gervais had eluded authorities that had been looking for him in connection with committing genocide in the current Muhanga district.

During the 1994 genocide against Tutsi, the suspect was very instrumental in the gruesome murder of Tutsi at former Nyabikenke Commune.

After the genocide, Hategekimana fled to neighboring DRC. He was later in 2008 charged and sentenced to 15 years in prison by the Gacaca community courts in his absence.

Hategekimana later returned to Rwanda and settled in Nyamasheke district and obtained a national ID under new name Ndayambaje Gervais.

With the faked name and new district away from where he committed the genocide crimes, he continued to elude authorities that had always pursued him to serve his sentence.

However,  Ndayambaje Gervais ran out of luck on Friday when he decided to visit his ancestral village at Gasagara in Muhanga district and was arrested by community members on night patrol.

He was asked to produce identification documents and found to bear very different names from what he is actually well known of in this village. He was arrested and taken to the Sector office which later forwarded him to Kiyumba Police station.

Ndayisaba Aimable the Rongi Sector Executive Secretary confirmed to IGIHE that indeed Ndayambaje was being held pending further investigations.

“We have handed him to prosecution for further investigations of the previous case in which he was found guilty and sentenced in absentia”.

Source: Taarifa.rw

Tribute to the world’s top Expert on #Rwanda #Genocide

(Watch Video).

Today, she would have turned 76 years old. Her name is Alison Des Forges. For many in the human rights world, Dr. Alison Des Forges needs no introduction. This eminent human rights advocate died in a tragic plane crash nearly 10 years ago. Des Forges may have passed on but her outstanding work remains to inspire us all and generations to come.

Leave none to tell the story, Ntihazasigare n’uwo kubara inkuru

Her award-winning account of genocide, Leave None to Tell the Story remains the primary source to understanding the political machinery behind the campaign to wipe out all the Tutsi from the face of Rwanda.

Resolve to name and prevent Genocide

While politicians were still playing with words, she became the first voice to call nations to stop the wave of genocide that she clearly saw coming ahead of time. When her call went unheeded, she challenged policymakers to call it by its rightful name–Genocide of Tutsi.

Fighting for justice

Des Forges testified as an expert witness in a dozen trials involving the masterminds of genocide.

Like all human rights advocates, Des Forges had her share of criticisms. In many cases though, I think it is fair to say that the weight of her work and dedication to human rights values, trumps by far any criticism against her so far. Well, I stand to be corrected!

In the comment section below, please write your views on Des Forges’ legacy.

By Albert

#KofiAnnan ’s Unaccountable Legacy #genocide #Rwanda

KofiAnnan1

Kofi Annan’s ability to project an unflappable persona was generally cited as his great strength. But in other, much more profound ways, this aloofness was his defining weakness. Photograph by Mischa Schoemaker / Sipa / AP

The news stories about the passing of Kofi Annan continue to float around in the media. Philip Gourevitch, one of the best writers on Rwanda genocide against the Tutsi makes his voice count as well. He eloquently discusses how Kofi Annan failed to express any shred of remorse towards his actions or inactions during the genocide of Tutsi in Rwanda and other mass atrocities crimes of the 90s across the globe. Gourevitch’s piece in the New Yorker today is definitely a must-read. Click here to read more.

by Albert.

The Dark legacy of #KofiAnnan

Former UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan. Photo credit: Pulse.com

When I woke up late this morning, the news stories about the death of former UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan, greeted me. I had to bite my tongue, however, to honestly mourn this man, who, once assumed an office with the power to make decisions of life and death over many lives including my own life back in 1994.

Amidst a dozen newspaper articles praising his legacy, I rushed to check on survivors’ and some genocide scholars’ virtual platforms to make sure I’m not the only one questioning Annan’s legacy.

Not to my surprise, most survivors expressed mixed feelings at best and ‘‘who cares’’ kind of reaction at worst.

‘’Today, Kofi Annan goes down in history as a person who ignored the call to assist people in great danger. He will join in hell his boss Boutros Boutros Ghali and Francois Mitterrand who sided with genocidaires till the end’’, One survivor observed with anger.

This reaction is usually in stark contrast with basic ethics in our culture. If a human being dies, the Rwandan culture dictates us to express sympathy or at least keep silent. But the genocide of Tutsis in Rwanda broke down nearly each and every values and ritual we once believed in. Growing up we were told “Umuntu ni nyir’igitinyiro’’, a human being is sacred. But in 1994, we watched our families being chopped off with machetes and their corpses left on street rotting at the mercy of wild dogs.

Coming back to Annan, we are in a difficult position here: how can you express sympathy to a man who displayed utter indifference, if not complicity, when your family was being slaughtered? A ‘’tit for tat’’ sentiment seems to be absolutely a fair reaction to me. After all, why can’t we question the legacy of an official like Kofi Annan who failed to do, or at least try and fail to do, the job he signed up for?

Kofi Annan’s Passivity towards Genocide of Tutsi

Kofi Annan’s unconscionable passivity in the face of word that the Hutus were planning on slaughtering the Tutsis, amounts to complicity according to many genocide scholars.

Former Israeli Amb. Dore Gold’s book, Tower of Babble, documents Kofi Annan’s upsetting role in the genocide of Tutsis.

The most startling revelation: Despite having credible advance warning that a genocide was imminent, Kofi was the man who spearheaded the UN’s unconscionable position of “neutrality” as Hutu militias murdered thousands of Tutsis per day.

On January 11, 1994—three months before the genocide began—Major General Romeo Dallaire, head of the original UN peacekeeping unit in Rwanda, sent a secret cable to UN officials in New York warning that a “very, very important government politician” had put him in touch with a Hutu informant who warned that Hutu militias were planning the “extermination” of minority Tutsis.

No alarm bells went off at the UN, even though, as Gold writes, “Warning signs of an impending massacre were everywhere.” The man running the relevant division at the time, the Department of Peacekeeping Missions, was Kofi Annan. Actually, alarm bells didn’t necessarily have to go off, as Gen. Dallaire offered a silver lining: He knew the location of the Hutus’ weapons cache, and he was planning to seize it and stop the slaughter before it started.

But his plan to save hundreds of thousands of lives was short-circuited by Kofi Annan, who didn’t want to upset the sitting Hutu government or in any way appear to be taking sides. Not only did Kofi not do anything to prevent genocide, but his actions almost assured that the Security Council wouldn’t either.

Hiding truth about Genocide of Tutsi

According to various accounts cited by Gold, including the UN’s own post-debacle report, Security Council members complained that Kofi’s department kept them in the dark, not revealing the true nature and full extent of the genocide. Kofi’s caution could not be chalked up to doubts about the accuracy of the warning.

The UN secretary general’s personal representative investigated the matter. Despite his well-documented pro-Hutu leanings, he wrote back to the UN that he had “total, repeat total confidence in the veracity and true ambitions of the informant.” In other words, not only did Kofi and the UN have a Hutu informant who gave them advance notice of the genocide, but they were able to verify the veracity of that informant.

Still Kofi insisted on doing nothing. Once the slaughter started and tens of thousands had been murdered, Kofi acted—just not the right way. To make sure that Gen. Dallaire’s men were not trying to stop the genocide, he instructed the commander in Rwanda to “make every effort not to compromise your impartiality or to act beyond your mandate.”

Kofi’s advocacy for “impartiality” no doubt helped lead the Security Council to slash the already small peacekeeping contingent almost 90%.

 

So, let’s face it. Should we, the survivors, mourn the loss of Kofi Annan? Well, I find no incentive to do so. End

By Albert Gasake