“In their greatest hour of need, the world failed the people of Rwanda.”

–Kofi Annan

The Rwandan Genocide has claimed the lives of over 1,000,000 people, majority of which were Tutsis, in a span of less than a hundred days in 1994. The conflict started in 1990 between the Hutu Majority government, who believed it was their aim to destroy all of God’s enemies, and the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) mostly led by the Tutsis when a power sharing government between the two was deemed unacceptable by the Hutus. Due to international pressure a ceasefire was put in place that ended right after the assassination of the President, Juvénal Habyarimana, when his plane was shot down. The genocidal killings began the next day the aftermath of which was, the destruction of infrastructure, displacement of over 2,000,000 Rwandans, the use of rape as a weapon of war and a crippled economy which is the reason for Rwanda being a third world state today.

The Rwandan Genocide was perhaps the worst genocide seen in the world, after the holocaust, in a small span of time. The fact that countries in a position to provide help, like the United States, United Kingdom and Belgium, did not do so reflected on their lack to assume responsibility for the thousands of innocents depending on them. The Genocide was a stimulus for the creation of the International Criminal Court to promote accountability for genocidal and war crimes all over the world to prevent such atrocities from taking place ever again.