Irish students stunned by Genocide history

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Irish students at Murambi memorial site

Irish students at Murambi memorial site

Trinity College Dublin (TCD) and University College Dublin (UCD) students who are at the National University of Rwanda (NUR) for their post graduate research visited the Genocide Memorial site of Murambi and were shocked to learn what happened in Rwanda in 1994.

After visiting the memorial site the students expressed their sorrow over the atrocities of the Genocide perpetrated against Tutsi.

Gaspard Mukwiye, a guide at Murambi Memorial site explained to students the genesis of Genocide in Rwanda, how it was done and how it was stopped.

Mukwiye explained that before the colonial period, Rwandans used to live together peacefully but hatred came in when Belgian colonialists introduced their leadership based on the principle of divide and rule.

He went on explaining how some Rwandans were convinced by the division gospel that was preached by colonialists which generated the first main era of conflict in 1959.

“This was called revolution of the Hutu whereby Tutsis were killed and sent in exile by force,” he said.

Mukwiye stated that the top leaders of the 1st and second Republics of Rwanda which planned the Genocide by persuading Hutus to consider Tutsis as their enemies who should not have any right in Rwanda.

TCD-UCD Students after visiting the memorial site and witnessing what happened during the Genocide against Tutsis expressed their disappointment in humanity.

The students that described what happened in the Genocide against Tutsi as horrific and shocking.

Julia A. Daly from the United States of America said: “What happened is horrific; it is shocking and sad. It’s unbelievable how people were murdered in large number, in a short time and in cruel way like that.”

However, she finds it important to visit the memorial site to get more informed about what happened in the Genocide perpetrated against Tutsi.

On that point, she stressed that some of her fellow students learn about the Genocides that happened in the world including the Genocide in Rwanda, but never go in depth to get details about the history of some realities like the systematic plan of the Genocide against Tutsi as they learnt it at the memorial site.

Murambi Memorial site harbours more than 50,000 remains of Tutsi and is located at a former Technical school in the Southern District of Nyamagabe.

In 1994, the school was under construction. When the killings started, Tutsis in the region tried to hide at a local church. Local leaders lured them into a trap by sending them to the technical school, claiming that they would be protected there.

At the school, water and electricity were cut-off and the victims were starved and weakened to the point of failing to defend themselves.

 

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