19 May 1994
The Interahamwe and the Presidential Guard continue massacres of civilians in Kigali. 29 people are killed in a church in a government-controlled area of Kigali. 400 orphans are held hostage by the Interahamwe and government troops. The captors of these children say they will kill them if RPF forces continue advancing towards government positions. The French newspaper, La Liberation, accuses the French Government of continuing to arm the Government in Rwanda that has been responsible for the massacres of about a half a million Tutsi and Hutus from opposition parties. The paper mentions the 6 million US dollars that France gave Rwanda to purchase arms from Egypt, arms that are being used to exterminate civilians. With the assistance of Human Rights Watch, members of the Rwandan community in the US file a case seeking compensation against Jean-Bosco Barayagwiza in a US District Court in New York. Barayagwiza instigated massacres over the Hutu extremist RTLM radio by encouraging Hutu to exterminate Tutsi, including members of the plaintiffs’ families. The plaintiffs submitted to the court evidence that Barayagwiza is an executive official of the Hutu extremist party CDR, which has its own militia operating in conjunction with Rwandan Government forces in carrying out a planned extermination of Rwanda’s Tutsi population.
18 May 1994
The RPF uses its Radio Muhabura to encourage people who have been trapped in various parts of Kigali behind enemy lines to report to RPF controlled areas for rescue. A UN High Commission for Refugees official reporting from a refugee camp accuses RPF forces of killing people and burning houses in Kibungo Prefecture. In an interview with the VOA, Major General Paul Kagame, Chairman of the Military High Command, denies accusations that RPF forces killed ordinary civilians, but said that armed militias at the frontline were legitimate targets.
17 May 1994
Security Council resolution 918 extends the UNAMIR mission for the protection of the people and, for that, authorizes the deployment of 5,500 peacekeepers (UNAMIR II). It also provides for an arms embargo on Rwanda.
The UN Security Council approves Resolution 918 for the deployment of 5,500 peacekeepers to Rwanda. No soldiers are available and none will be deployed to Rwanda under the terms of this resolution until after the genocide is over. More than five weeks into the genocide, the UN Security Council imposes an arms embargo on the Interim Government under Section 13 of Resolution 918.
16 May 1994
At the Security Council, Minister Bicamumpaka denies the government’s role in the killings, saying that “Hundreds of thousands of Hutu were massacred by the RPF simply because they were Hutu”. Representatives of Argentina, Spain, New Zealand, the Czech Republic and the United Kingdom disagree.
Augustin Bizimana, the Interim Government’s Minister of Defense, tells reporters that the massacres have stopped. Almost simultaneously, government soldiers and the Interahamwe execute hundreds of Tutsi taking refuge in Kabgayi church. RPF forces take control of Bugesera District and rescue about 2,000 people. They are mainly Tutsi survivors of the Ntarama Church massacre, who have come out of the swamps of the Nyabarongo river basin. They had maintained weeks of resistance against the Interahamwe militia there. Refugees who fled to Tanzania as a result of the massacres are still returning to Kibungo Prefecture via the Rusumo border post, under the control of RPF forces. The RPF Chairman Colonel Alex Kanyarengwe issues a message calling for an international tribunal for Rwanda to put on trial all those who participated in the genocide. He encourages Rwandan refugees who fled the country to return, including members of the Interahamwe, so long as they surrender their weapons and denounces their deeds. President Sindikubwabo visits Kibuye Prefecture where he expresses satisfaction over the genocidal killings which were committed in the prefecture and thanks the killers for a job well done.
15 May 1994
The BBC reports that the most recent arrivals to a refugee camp in northern Tanzania are accusing the RPF forces of committing atrocities against women and children in the Kibungo communes. The RPF representative in Brussels, James Rwego, denies the charges in a BBC interview. Rwego says the RPF is only interested in apprehending the militias who are responsible for the massacres in Rwanda. About 318 refugees in the RPF controlled town of Byumba sign a document that strongly condemns the Interim Government for its leading role in promoting the international crime of genocide against the Rwandan people. Pope John Paul II makes a public statement labeling the violence in Rwanda as “an out-and-out genocide, for which unfortunately even Catholics are responsible.”
14 May 1994
Prime Minister Jean Kambanda visits the National University of Rwanda to thank the staff for the well-done “work” of killing Tutsi and encourages them to develop effective methods of self-defence. Bernard Kouchner, a former French Minister of Health and formerly the French Minister for Humanitarian Affairs, as well as co-founder of Médecins Sans Frontières, visits Kigali. Kouchner tells journalists that Tutsi and Hutu members of the opposition were massacred for what they were, and that is genocide. He emphasises that the massacres perpetrated by the government against innocent citizens were totally unacceptable by the French Government, and that the Rwandan Government should not expect any further military assistance from France as has been the tradition. He dismisses as a sham the excuse that President Habyarimana’s death was a cause for genocide.
13 May 1994
86 girls in a missionary school in Gikongoro are reported to have been massacred and buried in a mass grave. The RPF forces continue to rescue people coming up from the swamps where they have been hiding. Refugees who fled to Tanzania are returning home, showing to be false the allegations by the Interim Government that the RPF has closed the Rwanda -Tanzania border. The UN Security Council continues discussing the Secretary-General’s request to expand UNAMIR forces in Rwanda. The Council is trying to reconcile the proposed UNAMIR troop size of 5,500 with the US suggestion of deploying an appropriate force along the Rwanda borders in protected zones. The RPF spokesman at the United Nations in New York, Claude Dusaidi, in an interview on BBC radio, says the UNAMIR expansion for Rwanda should be in the context of facilitating humanitarian assistance to the displaced, and protecting areas on the Rwanda–Zaire and Rwanda–Burundi borders controlled by the Rwandan army. Innocent civilians in these areas are being massacred by MDR and CDR militias and some government forces.
12 May 1994
United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Jose Ayala Lasso travels to Kigali. He utters the word “Genocide”.
The President of the UN Security Council discloses that the Council is considering the expansion of UNAMIR to a force of 8,000 with Nigeria, Zimbabwe, and Tanzania to contribute troops. The UN Under-Secretary for Humanitarian Affairs visits Rwanda where he holds separate meetings with the commander of the RPF forces, Major General Paul Kagame, and with the Chief of Staff of the Rwanda Government Forces, Major General Augustin Bizimungu. Whereas Major General Kagame is of the view that the force should only play the role of facilitating humanitarian assistance, Major General Bizimungu expects the force to play an intervention role in the on-going war. The Tanzanian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Joseph Rwegasira, in an interview with the BBC, says that his country will not contribute troops to the proposed expanded UNAMIR force of 5,500 to be sent to Rwanda
11 May 1994
The UN Security Council debates the request by Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali that a UNAMIR force of 5,500 be sent to stop the massacres that are going on in Rwanda. The Secretary-General’s request is widely seen as controversial because of concerns that the force may assume an interventionist role in the war between the RPF and the Rwandan army. This would mirror the recent disastrous experience of the UN forces in Somalia. US President Bill Clinton says that the US is not willing to contribute personnel to an expanded UNAMIR force, but would contribute financial and logistical support to the force to be sent to Rwanda. Clinton then suggests that an African force would be most appropriate for the proposed mission, but the mandate should be limited to the protection of certain safe corridors and the safe movement and distribution of relief aid. The Chairman of the RPA Military High Command, Major General Paul Kagame, says that an expanded UNAMIR force should not exceed the 2,500 strength of its former size and that the role of the force should be purely for humanitarian assistance.
10 May 1994
The Kenyan Government announces that it will not contribute forces to the proposed UN humanitarian assistance mission to Rwanda. A US Air Force cargo planes arrive in Mwanza, Tanzania carrying relief supplies for Rwandan refugees in camps. A US Defense Department spokesperson says that although military planes are carrying relief supplies to Rwandan refugees, no American military personnel will be sent to Rwanda. Radio Rwanda announces that President Sindikubwabo will attend the swearing in ceremony of South African President Nelson Mandela.