Swedish scholars slam west over role in 1994 Genocide
Students and staff members of the Uppsala University Community and Nordic Africa Institute in Sweden, have condemned the International Community for holding back while over a million innocent lives were slaughtered during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
This was during a Public Lecture held at the university, aimed at informing the academia of Uppsala about what caused the mayhem that claimed over million lives.
The lecture was moderated by Professor Fantu Cheru, a Research Director at the Nordic Africa Institute, who regretted that the International Community had said never again to Genocide yet it happened in 1994 in Rwanda when all were watching.
“But as we remember today the victims of the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda, we should also be thankful to the Government of Rwanda for its achievements towards reconciliation and fighting against impunity,” Cheru said in his opening remarks.
Görrel Espelund, a Freelance Journalist presently based in Gothenburg, Sweden, pointed out the divide and rule system used by Belgian colonialists, the use of IDs indicating ethnic groups and other incidences led to massive fleeing from the country in 1959 and the subsequent climax, being the Genocide.
“Rwanda was neglected by the international media, which should have played a critical role in informing properly the whole world of the occurrences of the 1994 Genocide,” Espelund said.
Jacqueline Mukangira, Rwanda’s ambassador to Sweden and Nordic Countries emphasized that if the International Community had acted promptly with determination, it could have stopped the killings “but there was no sort of intervention.”
She also called upon the international community to cooperate in arresting fugitives responsible for the genocide, most of whom live in European capitals.
“Genocide suspects and fugitives should be arrested, brought to book and be tried in Rwanda, since the Rwandan justice system is well advanced to handle such cases,” she said.
Mukangira lauded Gacaca courts for having been pivotal to the healing and reconciliation process at community level.
“The performance of the UN mandated International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) based in Arusha with a multi-billion USD budget can not be compared to the achievements of the Gacaca Courts,” she said.
She encouraged students and scholars from Sweden to come to Rwanda and research on matters of Genocide and give scientific light and advice to the world and give it the voice it deserves.