The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), on Tuesday 27 October 2009, launched its first combined Outreach Workshop for secondary school students and teachers from the districts of Rulindo and Musanze in Northern Rwanda. The main objective of the three-day workshop, sponsored by the European Commission, is to inform and sensitize the Rwandan population, specifically the students and teachers about the role of ICTR in contributing to the unity and national reconciliation process in Rwanda.
Speaking on behalf of the Registrar, Mr. Roland Amoussouga, Chief of External Relations and Strategic Planning Section and ICTR Spokesperson, underlined that “the workshop was one of the true testimonies of the existing cooperation between Rwanda, the European Commission and the Tribunal”.
In their inaugural remarks, both Mayors of Musanze and Rulindo Districts, Mr. Celestin Karabayinga and Mr. Justus Kangwaje, expressed their profound gratitude to ICTR for organizing the workshop targeting the youth, who are future leaders of Rwanda. They urged the students to be vigilant and active at the forefront in the fight against genocide and its related ideology. They said that they were optimistic that the young generation can be guided to contribute towards Rwanda’s development.
The ongoing pilot Outreach Project is aimed at putting in place a secondary-school level based genocide awareness network that will help enhance the youth awareness about ICTR achievements and challenges. The Project will also promote the respect of human rights values and sharing of knowledge and best practices generated by the ICTR as part of its legacy in strengthening the unity and national reconciliation in Rwanda.
Since 2005, the Tribunal has been conducting annually, awareness-raising workshops in different secondary schools throughout the country. More than 60 Rwandan secondary schools have benefited from these workshops.
This workshop was also attended by Mr. Alfred Kwende, Head of Office of the Prosecutor in Rwanda, the Regional Police Commander for the Northern Region, Chief Superintendant Rogers Rutikanga, Dr. Diogene Bideri from the National Commission for the Fight Against Genocide and other officials from the districts of Musanze and Rulindo.