KARONGI - Several Members of Parliament, on Sunday, joined hundreds of Karongi residents in memory of Bisesero victims who were abandoned by French troops in 1994.
Over 50,000 people perished as they tried to fight back against the Interahamwe militias using traditional weapons including stones, sticks, arrows and bows. Only 1,300 people from 168 families are estimated to have survived the killing.
Speaking shortly after laying wreaths on mass graves in Bisesero, the MPs condemned the killings and described the victims as heroes.
“After visiting the site and hearing from survivors, one has to admit that these people were very brave. They deserve respect because they are our heroes,” Landrada Umuraza, one of the MPs said.
She regretted that despite the victim’s efforts to challenge their enemies, the international community did not do enough to help them.
“French soldiers lied to the local population to come out of hiding only to be exposed to the killers. It is a shame they looked on as innocent people lost their lives,” said Umuraza.
Karongi district mayor Bernard Kayumba, who is also one of the survivors from Bisesero emphasized that the distorted history of the country should serve as a principal guideline to guarantee a better future.
“Those who died after fighting for over three months should be our inspiration to achieve a better future for the present generation,” he said.