Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 25 March, 2019 – The Embassy of the Republic of Rwanda in Ethiopia, in partnership with the African Union Commission (AUC) and the Institute for Peace and Security Studies (IPSS), organized a Symposium themed “Preserving Memory, Upholding Humanity”as part of activities of the 25th commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda.
The commemorative event was attended by over 250 participants mainly from members of the diplomatic corps accredited in Ethiopia and staff of academic institutions based in Addis Ababa.
To start off the program, the participants observed a minute of silence to honor the memory of the victims of the Genocide against the Tutsi, as well as the victims of Idai cyclone and the Fulani villagers killed recently in Mali.
In her keynote address, Amb. Hope Tumukunde Gasatura said that “the commemoration period is always an opportune moment to pay homage to the victims and call for greater awareness of the international community in its responsibility to prevent Genocide on the continent and beyond”.
The symposium was made up of two panels featuring prominent scholars such as Mr. Tom Ndahiro, Dr. Usta Kaitesi and Dr. Matlosa among others. The first one evolved on the preservation of Genocide memory with focus on cooperation and the responsibility in fighting impunity and genocide denial. Panelists emphasized that International cooperation is very critical to fight impunity and denial, and that African Member states ought to strengthen their national human rights institutions and fight against hate speech.
The second panel focused more on the role of the youth in transforming their society. Using the example of Rwanda’s reconstruction, participants converged on saying that inclusion of youth is a key priority in the process of rebuilding destroyed communities.
The Kwibuka awareness campaign will continue in Ethiopia with other activities including, an open session of the AU’s Peace and Security Council, the official commemoration on 7th April, a Walk to Remember and a Kwibuka25 exhibition.