Timeline

Timeline

1994

6 May 1994

6 May 1994

The President of the UN Security Council writes to UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali asking for “contingency planning with regard to the delivery of humanitarian assistance as well as support to displaced persons in Rwanda.”  The European Union agrees to send a delegation to countries bordering Rwanda that received Rwandan refugees. The mission will be to evaluate the problems of refugees, to see what they need most and assess the risks they refugees face. The President of EU, Theodole Pangros, says the EU categorically refuses to send troops to Rwanda.

1994

5 May 1994

5 May 1994

The RPF writes to the UN Security Council to condemn the genocide in Rwanda and asks it to set up a tribunal to prosecute those who committed these crimes since October 1990. UNAMIR starts negotiations with the Interim Government to evacuate survivors trapped in Hotel des Mille Collines.

1994

4 May 1994

4 May 1994

Major General Paul Kagame says in a radio interview on Voice of America (VOA) that the RPF objects to any UN intervention force because it has no meaning in the situation prevailing in Rwanda. UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali appears on the American ABC television news program “Nightline” and says there is “a real genocide” in Rwanda. The UN High Commission for Human Rights announces on Voice of America that it will be visiting Rwanda and the sub region in the next few days to assess the situation and to see what action can be taken.

1994

3 May 1994

3 May 1994

Radio Uganda reports that Lake Victoria is awash with the bodies of genocide victims from Rwanda. UN Under Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Hoff Hernan says a task force will be set up composed of as many countries as possible. Some will provide logistics and others troops to deploy to Rwanda. The RPF categorically opposes the deployment of any UN Peacekeeping Force in Rwanda, arguing that the appropriate time for the UN force to have intervened was three weeks ago when the UN had a presence in Kigali but failed to protect civilians. The RPF also points out that anyone who was a potential victim has either died or fled the country – there are no people for the UN to protect. Pope John Paul II issues a strong condemnation of the genocidal slaughter in Rwanda.

1994

2 May 1994

2 May 1994

In an interview on Radio France, Jean Marie Vianney Ndagijimana, the Rwandan Ambassador to France, condemns his own government for being responsible for the current massacres in the country. Oxfam delivers a letter to British Prime Minister John Major urging military intervention in Rwanda.

1994

1 May 1994

1 May 1994

An armed gang including members the Interahamwe militia storm an orphanage in Butare town killing 21 orphans and 13 Red Cross volunteers. There is a mass exodus of Rwandan refugees to Tanzania and Burundi. Many of them are perpetrators of genocide. Augustin Ngirabatware, Interim Government Minister of Planning, meets Senegal’s President Abdou Diouf and delivers a message that he also delivered to the presidents of Gabon and Togo. The French Government gives audience to Foreign Minister Jerome Bicamumpaka of the Interim Government.

1994

30 April 1994

30 April 1994

After taking control of the town of Rusumo close to the Tanzanian border, the RPF issues a statement that it is categorically opposed to the proposed UN intervention force because “intervention at this stage can no longer serve any useful purpose as far as stopping the massacres is concerned.”

1994

29 April 1994

29 April 1994

The United Nations authorise the Rwandan Minister of Foreign Affairs of the genocidal government to travel to New York to the Security Council.

More than 5000 Tutsi held in Cyangugu stadium are killed by soldiers and militia. Thousands of Tutsi are still stranded and trapped in churches, hotels and schools in Kigali.

The UN Security Council debates for 8 hours on the use of the term “genocide” in relation to Rwanda. The United Kingdom and the United States resist use of the term.

Between 28 and 29 April, approximately 250 000 people flee from Rwanda into Tanzania.

1994

28 April 1994

28 April 1994

Christine Shelley, spokeswoman for the US State Department, refuses to use the word genocide when addressing journalists, indicating that the use of such a term has many implications. Oxfam issues a press release stating that the killing in Rwanda amounts to genocide. Human Rights Watch criticizes the French Government for receiving the Rwandan Interim Government officials Jean-Bosco Barayagwiza and Jerome Bicamumpaka. The President of the International Federation of Human Rights in France, Daniel Jacob, says that 5000 people trapped inside Hotel des Mille Collines in the center of Kigali have written a letter to him appealing to the international community for urgent help.

1994

27 April 1994

27 April 1994

Foreign Affairs Minister, Jérôme Bicamumpaka, and CDR representative, Jean Bosco Barayagwiza, are received in France at the Elysée and the Ministry of Defense. Belgium and the United had refused to issue them the visas.  

In the southern town of Muyaga, 4,000 Tutsi are massacred by the Rwandan army and Hutu civilians. The world news is dominated by the election of Nelson Mandela as president in South Africa’s first post-apartheid elections.