Commemoration of Genocide against Tutsi in Rwanda Kenya’s Foreign C.S Amina Mohammed joins Rwandan High Commissioner to Kenya James Kimonyo in a peaceful procession along Parliament Road, Nairobi on April 7, 2017. PHOTO BY GEORGE ORIDO
Kenya supports Rwandan quest to have the 1994 genocide framed in the specific way that the country is pushing and have the genocide against Tutsi in Rwanda.
Speaking to the press during the 23rd commemoration of the genocide that killed nearly one people, Kenya’s Foreign Affairs C.S Amina Mohammed said Kenya supports the 2003 Judicial order by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Arusha (ICTR).
“I was invited here by the Rwandan High Commissioner to join them in the commemoration and I am glad to represent Kenya as a true friend,” she said after she honoured the invite to a parallel commemoration to that organised by the United Nations at Gigiri.
Recalling that she has ever attended the commemoration including in Europe during her tour of duty as an envoy, she Kenya takes Rwanda as a very close friend who have managed to show that people can come from conflict and make headways to become a great nation.
The Judicial order expressly recognises the genocide as having been against the Tutsi.
During the commemoration, Rwandan High Commissioner to Kenya Mr James Kimonyo had earlier stated that his country was not asking for any favour but to have the United Nations to come out and say it as it is.
“When you want to treat a wound, you first have it open and then you may apply medicine so it may heal,” he used the metaphor to push that the first step to complete healing after the genocide is to recognise that it was targeted against Tutsi.
“I know many people die who were Hutu, including the Prime Minister then who said she could not allow the killing of specific people and they killed her for her stand,” he saying Rwanda has never failed to recognise such deaths.
Mr Kimonyo led his nation in the celebrations boycotting the one organised at Gigiri citing problems with the U.N calling the genocide, ‘genocide in Rwanda’.
He praised a recent apology from Pope Benedict for the atrocities committed by the Church during the genocide terming it a step in the right direction that inspire healing.
He said Kenya can learn a lesson from the genocide in Rwanda and urged Kenyans to keep the peace and remain united.
Ambassador Amina agreed, “There are many lessons to draw from the genocide as Kenyans and we need to have a political process that will forever avoid us getting there.”
During the vent attended by hundreds of Rwandans living in Kenya, diplomats and other guests, one of the survivors moved the crowd with his testimony.
36 –year-old Vincent Kayonga told of how he escaped from home from advancing Ntarahamwe militia losing many family members after they had been asked to “go back to Ethiopia where you came from.”
The United Nations assistant Secretary General Iska Kirambo said the World should remain alert and efforts should be made to make sure such do not happen again.
The Chief Guest at the event Hon Ndungu Githinji who is the Chairman of the foreign Relations Committee thanked the Rwandan people for remaining steadfast and coming from grass to build a modern and powerful nation.