The ICTR External Relations and Strategic Planning Section, and the Genocide Anniversary Task Force organized a commemoration service today, Wednesday, 07 April 2004 to mark the 10th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide. The service was part of ICTR staff members’ observance of the United Nation’s official day of reflection on the genocide.
The event which took place at the ICTR Headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania, included expressions from ICTR officials, staff, and from local religious institutions. Together, they honoured the memory of the victims of the Rwandan genocide, and of all the ICTR staff members who died while serving the cause of peace through justice.
Judge Andresia Vaz, Vice-President of the Tribunal, offered her condolences to genocide survivors and called on staff to show tolerance and understanding. She asked for prayers for the souls of the victims, and for meditation to reflect on the events ten years ago. She also placed a commemoration wreath at the site of a permanent monument dedicated to Rwandese victims of the 1994 genocide, and to deceased ICTR staff members. Participants at the ceremony observed one minute of silence after the placing of the wreath.
The Press & Public Affairs Unit of the ICTR External Relations and Strategic Planning Section also launched a series of initiatives to mark ten years since the genocide. These include a special genocide website and the screening of a short movie dedicated to the victims of the genocide. The site explains the progress of the Tribunal in bringing to justice the genocide perpetrators. It also lists genocide commemoration activities being sponsored by other organizations throughout the world, and lists ICTR staff members who died while serving the cause of international justice.