Members of the Rwandan community in Egypt were on Wednesday joined by Egyptian officials and members of the diplomatic corps accredited to the country to mark the 24th anniversary of the Genocide against the Tutsi.
Mourners were mostly Rwandan students in Egypt and diplomats, gathered to commemorate in an event that was also attended by the head of US mission to Cairo, the Deputy Ambassador of China, and the representative of the Egyptian Chief of Defence Staff, among others.
Rwanda’s envoy to Egypt, Sheikh Saleh Habimana, told The New Times Thursday that the event was characterised by an emotional testimony from the former Egyptian Ambassador to Rwanda (1996 to 2000), Mona Omar, who was appointed to Rwanda while the wounds of the Genocide were still fresh.
“She talked about a survivor who used to work for the Egyptian embassy in Kigali that gave her a testimony on how he witnessed the militia murdering his parents and killed all of his children,” Amb. Habimana said.
The former Egyptian envoy, who said she had recently been to Rwanda, lauded the transformation the country has gone through under the leadership of President Paul Kagame, whom she said she considers “a model leader”.
The Deputy Secretary General of the Egyptian Agency of Partnership for Development, Amb. Yasser Shaban, commiserated with Rwanda and thanked the country’s leadership that chose not to be held back by the unfortunate history.
In his remarks, Sheikh Habimana saluted the fallen heroes of the RPF-Inkotanyi who paid the ultimate price to stop the Genocide.
“The Genocide was the evil work of the Government and you need a disciplined government that’s strong enough to prevent revenge, strengthen social cohesion serving all without any discrimination, including Genocide perpetrators who repented,” he said.