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Perpetuators of Rwanda genocide must answer - Kutesa

By Vision Reporter

Added 8th April 2015 07:13 PM

The President of the United Nations General Assembly, Sam Kutesa has said that all perpetuators of the 1994 Rwanda genocide “must” answer for the atrocities that saw over 800, 000 people killed.

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The President of the United Nations General Assembly, Sam Kutesa has said that all perpetuators of the 1994 Rwanda genocide “must” answer for the atrocities that saw over 800, 000 people killed.

By David Lumu

The President of the United Nations General Assembly, Sam Kutesa has said that all perpetuators of the 1994 Rwanda genocide “must” answer for the atrocities that saw over 800, 000 people killed.

“Those responsible for mass killings or genocide must be held accountable for their actions in order to end impunity and ensure justice for the victims,” he said.

According to a statement issued by Kutesa during the 21st commemoration of the Rwanda genocide memorial ceremony at the UN headquarters in New York, there is a need for a global “collective responsibility” to ensure that the events that happened in Rwanda 21 years ago are not repeated.

On 23 December 2003, the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution (A/RES/58/234) designating April 7, the start date of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, as the International Day of Reflection on the Genocide in Rwanda.

In a statement to mark the commemorative events of the Rwanda genocide, Kutesa saluted the ongoing trial of genocide perpetuators at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, the national court system and the community courts called “Gacaca”.

“At the international level, greater efforts are also being made including through the International Criminal Court to prosecute individuals for genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes,” he said.

The Rwandan genocide started April 7, 1994, after then-President Juvénal Habyarimana's plane was shot down. The shooting of Habyarimana’s plane sparked off ethnic violence pitting Hutus against Tutsi tribes.

This week on Tuesday, Rwanda marked the anniversary with President Paul Kagame saying that: “This country has changed. Rwanda has changed for good and forever."

Kagame also lit a flame of remembrance that will blare for 100 days to mark the genocide.

“We must use the lessons learned in Rwanda to prevent such events from ever taking place again, anywhere in the world.  We must learn from our failures in Rwanda; bearing in mind the dire consequences of indifference or failing to act in cases of suspected mass atrocities,” Kutesa said.

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