Anniversary of the Rwandan genocide: UN chief calls on the world community to unite against hatred

Годовщина геноцида в Руанде: глава ООН призвал мировое сообщество объединиться против ненависти

UN chief Antonio Guterres (center) lights a candle in memory of the victims of the Rwandan genocide. Anniversary of the Rwandan genocide: UN chief calls on the world community to unite against hatred Peace and Security

A million people were killed in 100 days. Neighbors attacked neighbors, friends became bitter enemies, and entire families were destroyed. Today the UN remembers the tragic events in Rwanda – the genocide against the Tutsi. In early April 1994, massacres of representatives of this ethnic group, as well as moderates and Hutus who sympathized with them, began in the country. The violence continued until mid-July.

“These 100 days have reflected the worst in humanity,” Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said at an event at UN headquarters marking the 30th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide.

Hate speech

Genocide is characterized by mass violence and murder, but begins with hate speech, the UN chief emphasized. Three decades after the genocide against the Tutsi, hate speech is still widespread throughout the world. Moreover, the “global megaphone of social networks” only amplifies hate speech, Guterres noted.

“Racism, misogyny, lies, anti-Semitism, intolerance towards Muslims, stigmatization, discrimination and outright denial – or even glorification – of past genocides, including the Holocaust and genocide against the Tutsi. The global community must unite against this stream of hate speech,” the Secretary General said.

He called on countries to ratify and fully implement the Convention on the Prevention of the Crime of Genocide, counteract disinformation and educate the population, especially young people.

Message to the Young Generation

“I want to give a special message to the young people of Rwanda who joined us here and online today… We will never forget the horrors of those monstrous 100 days. But we need your help. We need your voice and your activism to keep the memory of those who were killed alive. And call out hate wherever you hear or see it,” said the UN chief.

“Let us all fight back against hatred and intolerance wherever we find it. May the memory of the victims spur our actions and inspire us to strive to create a better and safer world for all people,” he added.

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