News / Africa

Memorial Torch Shines Light on Rwanda's Past and Present

Memorial Torch Shines Light on Rwanda's Past and Presenti
X
Gabe Joselow
April 04, 2014 1:35 AM
A traveling memorial torch is making its way across Rwanda on the way to Kigali for commemorations of the 20th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the most recent stop in the town of Ndera east of the capital.
Gabe Joselow
A traveling memorial torch is making its way across Rwanda on the way to Kigali for commemorations of the 20th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide.  The most recent stop was in the town of Ndera east of the capital.

In a simple ceremony, neither solemn nor formal, the flame of remembrance is passed from town to town, giving each region of the country its chance to reflect on how far Rwanda has come since the genocide 20 years ago.

Organizers say the flame represents remembrance, resillience and courage.

Hundreds of people have turned out to observe the ceremony ahead of a national week of mourning that takes place every year.

Phocas Kabayire is among those paying respect.

“The reason why I came here is because of this flame, which shows where we came from and where we are going, and also it makes us stronger to remember what happened in this country," said Kabayire.

A video depicts the horror of the genocide, when ethnic Hutu extremists killed hundreds of thousands of ethnic Tutsis and some moderate Hutus.

Today, ethnicity is rarely mentioned. And attendees here, like Ariette Kancime, say old divides have been mended.

“The reconciliation has been successful. Even though I wasn't here during the genocide, I can see the way people are forgiving each other. Frankly speaking, the survivors have forgiven the killers," said Kancime.

For those who are too young to remember the genocide, the memorial serves as a lesson to avoid a repeat of the past.

Defense Minister James Kabarebe issued a stern warning to those who threaten the government.

“There are some who tried to [take the country backward] and there are those who have this ideology, they are there, but what I know, they will die with that ideology," said Kabarebe.

His message follows the recent assassination of a Rwandan opposition leader in South Africa. The government denies involvement in the killing.

From here the torch will travel to the capital, where the president will on Monday use it to light a national flame of mourning.

You May Like

US Firms Concerned About China's New Cyber Regulations

New rules would require technology companies doing business in financial sector to hand over their source code, adopt Chinese encryption algorithms More

WHO Focus on Ebola Shifts to Ending Outbreak

Focus to be less on building facilities and more on efforts to find infected people, manage their cases, engage with communities and ensure proper burials More

US Scientist Who Conceived of Groundbreaking Laser Technology Dies

Charles Townes, Nobel laureate, laser co-creator paved way for other scientific discoveries: CDs, eye surgery, metal cutters to name a few technologies that rely on lasers More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Super Bowl Ads Compete for Eyes on TV, Webi
X
January 29, 2015 9:58 AM
Super Bowl Sunday (Feb. 1) is about more than just the NFL's American football championship and big parties to watch the game. Viewers also tune in for the world famous commercials that send Facebook and Twitter abuzz. Daniela Schrier reports on the social media rewards for America’s priciest advertising.
Video

Video Super Bowl Ads Compete for Eyes on TV, Web

Super Bowl Sunday (Feb. 1) is about more than just the NFL's American football championship and big parties to watch the game. Viewers also tune in for the world famous commercials that send Facebook and Twitter abuzz. Daniela Schrier reports on the social media rewards for America’s priciest advertising.
Video

Video Theologians Cast Doubt on Morality of Drone Strikes

In 2006, stirred by photos of U.S. soldiers mistreating Iraqi prisoners, a group of American faith leaders and academics launched the National Religious Campaign Against Torture. It played an important role in getting Congress to investigate, and the president to ban, torture. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Freedom on Decline Worldwide, Report Says

The state of global freedom declined for the ninth consecutive year in 2014, according to global watchdog Freedom House's annual report released Wednesday. VOA's William Gallo has more.
Video

Video As Ground Shifts, Obama Reviews Middle East Strategy

The death of Saudi Arabia’s king, the collapse of a U.S.-friendly government in Yemen and a problematic relationship with Israel’s leadership are presenting a new set of complications for the Obama administration and its Middle East policy. Not only is the U.S. leader dealing with adversaries in Iran, the Islamic State and al-Qaida, but he is now juggling trouble with traditional allies, as White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video MRI Seems to Help Diagnose Prostate Cancer, Preliminary Study Shows

Just as with mammography used to detect breast cancer, there's a lot of controversy about tests used to diagnose prostate cancer. Fortunately, a new study shows doctors may now have a more reliable way to diagnose prostate cancer for high risk patients. More from VOA's Carol Pearson.
Video

Video Smartphones About to Make Leap, Carry Basic Senses

Long-distance communication contains mostly sounds and pictures - for now. But scientists in Britain say they are close to creating additions for our smartphones that will make it possible to send taste, smell and even a basic touch. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video NASA Monitors Earth’s Vital Signs From Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, is wrapping up its busiest 12-month period in more than a decade, with three missions launched in 2014 and two this month, one in early January and the fifth scheduled for January 29. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, the instruments being lifted into orbit are focused on Earth’s vital life support systems and how they are responding to a warmer planet.
Video

Video Saved By a Mistake - an Auschwitz Survivor's Story

Dagmar Lieblova was 14 when she arrived at Auschwitz in December 1943, along with her entire Czech Jewish family. All of them were to die there, but she was able to leave after several months due to a bureaucratic mix-up which saved her life. Now 85, with three children and six grandchildren, she says she has a feeling of victory. This report by Ahmad Wadiei and Farin Assemi, of RFE/RL's Radio Farda is narrated by RFE’s Raymond Furlong.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid