10 April 2011
The 17th Commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi continues to be observed throughout The Netherlands.
A commemorative observance organized by the Embassy, in collaboration with students and faculty of the Institute of Social Studies (ISS), was held in The Hague and was attended by Dutch government officials, diplomats accredited to the Kingdom of The Netherlands, members of academia, ISS students, members of the Rwandan Diaspora and other Dutch citizens.
The event took place at the ISS and took the form of a seminar with several speakers, among them, Professor Mohammed Salih, Professor of Politics of Development at ISS, Mr. Francois Ngoboka a Rwandan Graduate Student at ISS, a testimony from Ms. Anne-Marie de Brouwer, author of a book: The Men Who Killed Me; and a keynote address by Ambassador Immaculee Uwanyiligira.
“As we remember, honour our people and bow in prayer for them – as we remember the pain, grief, and senseless brutality they endured, with the same stoic spirit, we stand strong and confidently declare that this will never happen again,” the Ambassador said.
“We resolve to transform our grief into strength and renewed determination to build a better future that Rwanda deserves. A future that is fast becoming a reality, a country in which all Rwandans live side by side in dignity and mutual respect”.
Ambassador Uwanyiligira reminded the audiencethat 17 years after the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi, “there are people and groups, many of them Rwandans, who, riddled with guilt of complicity, participation, or inaction during the Genocide, and in an attempt to cleanse themselves of this guilt, deny that the Genocide ever occurred.
Some among them even advocate its very extermination ideology”. This is inacceptable and must be condemned unreservedly. She said.
Later, the docu-drama, We Are All Rwandans, was screened. Commemoration activities will continues across The Netherlands. On 5 April, commemorative events were held at the University of Tilburg, organized by Rwandan faculty and students, in concert with their Dutch counterparts.
On April 9, a walk dubbed A Walk to Remember, organized by Ibuka, will be conducted, through the city of Rotterdam.
On April 12, more commemorative events will be held at Maastricht School of Management; the next day, at the University of Groningen; and on April 14, at Wageningen University; in cooperation with Rwandan students in those universities.