You are here

The Genocide

On the evening of 6 April 1994, the plane carrying Juvenal Habyarimana, the President of Rwanda, and Cyprien Ntaryamira, the President of Burundi, was shot down over Kigali. The assassinations shattered the fragile peace established by the Arusha Accords, brokered in the hope of ending the armed conflict between the Rwandan Patriotic Front and the Rwandan Government.

During the 100 bloody days that followed, unimaginable violence overtook the country. Genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes were perpetrated on a horrific scale, primarily against Tutsi civilians and moderate Hutus. Soldiers, gendarmes, politicians, Interahamwe and ordinary citizens were amongst the perpetrators.

Between eight-hundred thousand and one million men, women and children were massacred by Hutu extremists - a rate of killing four times greater than at the height of the Nazi Holocaust.

 View Timeline - Courtesy of the Outreach Programme on Rwanda and the United Nations.