Rwanda genocide commemoration in pictures

  • 7 April 2014
  • From the section Africa
Ceremonies have been held to pay tribute to the 800,000 people killed in the Rwandan genocide, which began on 7 April 1994.
The killing of ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus was re-enacted at the stadium, where UN peacekeepers managed to save thousands of lives.
In this scene, actors portray European colonial invaders and native people. Rwanda has repeatedly accused France of backing the Hutus militias responsible for the genocide - a charge it denies.
Tens of thousands of people filled the stadium to see the performances and hear stories of the atrocities, while storm clouds passed overhead.
Some of them were overcome by emotion and had to be carried away.
Many people had their entire families wiped out by the death squads.
The former leaders of the UK and South Africa, Tony Blair and Thabo Mbeki, were among the dignitaries. However, France was not represented. Its ambassador in Kigali, Michel Flesch, said his accreditation to attend had been withdrawn by the Rwandan government as the row over France's role in the genocide escalated.
UN chief Ban Ki-moon lit a memorial flame. He acknowledged the UN's "shame" for failing to prevent the slaughter.
Rwanda's President Paul Kagame said the nation had shown its capacity for "renewal" in the 20 years after the genocide, and had achieved unity.

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