Return to Rwanda, 1996



In 1994, Rwanda underwent a genocide of almost 1 million tutsis, the English-speaking minority that had been linked to the colonial power. The international community left the country on its own when the massacre began. The Rwandan Patriotic Front (tutsi), from bases in nearby Uganda, was able to expel the hutu government and army, driving them in 1994 to escape to nearby countries. The armed hutus infiltrated and blended into the orderly exodus of the civilian population that was rigorously organized by the hutu mayors and political leaders. In the course of this flight, more than 700,000 hutus descended upon the volcanic region of Goma, part of what was then called Zaire.