Kigali Genocide Memorial Museum is situated in Kigali city the capital city of Rwanda and the Rwanda Genocide tour is one of the major attractions in Rwanda. The museum was constructed as the aftermath of the Rwanda genocide that took place in 1994 which involved the killing of the Tutsi and the moderate Hutus by the Hutu extremists. The Kigali genocide memorial museum can be visited as part of the visits to the different genocide memorial sites while on the Rwanda genocide tour. Visits to the Kigali genocide memorial museum will make tourists go through a number of emotions as they go through the different sections of the museums that is the three exhibition displays that is the
A number of events led to the Rwanda genocide which led to the killing of over 1 million Rwandans who were Tutsis as the target population, the moderate Hutus and the twas. The Rwanda genocide is believed to have started before it reached its peak in 1994 after the assassination of juvenile Habyarimana who was a Hutu President of the Republic of Rwanda. It should be noted that during the governance of the then president Habyarimana who was considered a dictator was threatened by the opposition of the Rwanda Patriotic front which was headed by the Tutsis.
The rival opposition party, the Rwanda patriotic front, which was not in terms of how unjust and unfairly the government was treating the Tutsis and the moderate Tutsis, they decided to oppose the government. It should be noted that before the genocide, there were different killings of the Tutsis. During the Rwandan revolution of from 1959-1961, the transfer of power from the Belgian government to the Tutsi annoyed the Hutus which later led to the transfer to the Hutus that used their power to dominate the republic of Rwanda which was dictatorial to other groups of Rwandans that is to say the target population the Tutsis.
Other Events like the rumours that a Hutu chief was killed by the Tutsis which was not true because he was not even killed also sparked the rivalry between the two groups and with the occurrence of other events which were streamlined by the Hutu hardliners (a group that occupied big positions in the government) who were focused on wiping out the Tutsis from Rwanda.
The hardliners equipped the youths with fighting equipment like firearms, machetes, talked ill of the Tutsis and referred to them as terrorists and unfit to be part of Rwanda which was heartbreaking for the Tutsis who were the lesser group of individuals as compared to the Hutus. This showed that the Hutus had organized the massacres of the Tutsis for a long time and were ready at any cost. On 7th April 1994 the death of juvenile Habyarimana together with the president of Burundi Cyprien Ntaryamira all Hutus were killed in a plane crash after it was shot down by an unknown person. The death of the presidents sparked the beginning of the genocide because they blamed the Rwanda Patriotic Front which was headed by the Tutsis for being the culprits.
Many Tutsis were killed because of the need to wipe out the Tutsi race in the country and also because they wanted the Hutus as the only leaders and race in the country it led to also the killing of the moderate Hutus and the twas in the country. Over a million people in the country were killed and because of the evil that was instilled in the youth, other Hutus that helped the Tutsis to hide in their homes were killed which was quite saddening and embarrassing act to do to a fellow brother but with the help of the Rwanda patriotic front, hope was restored when they defeated the Hutus and mass slaughters were put to an end which led to the restoration of justice and the end of the genocide by 15th July 1994. The Rwanda genocide tour will make tourists go through different types of emotions of sadness, heartbreaks, pain because of the numerous killings that happened around the country which lead to the death of many people living children orphaned, girls and women raped.
Houses were destroyed property burnt down but in the end although the genocide brought pain in the hearts of the tourists that visit their joy will be restored after being able to see that in Rwanda people today look at themselves as one person and not defined by their different races, their living in peace among the different races and even if the genocide led to a number of killings, it made the country stronger and united as one.
The Kigali Genocide Memorial Museum
A number of memorial sites can be visited by tourists undertaking Rwanda genocide tours will have a chance to visit different genocide memorial sites including;
Murambi genocide memorial site where a large number of Tutsis were killed. Before the genocide, Murambi memorial site was a technical school so during the genocide, a group of Tutsis went to a bishop of a nearby church to seek for refugee who refused to give them shelter but advised them to go to a nearby school that is the Murambi technical school were he said there are French forces that would offer food and protection to them but once the people got to the school there wa no food nor the forces to protect them. This attracted the Hutu extremists to the school which led to the killing of the different Tutsis.
Nyamata genocide memorial site another genocide memorial site that can be visited by tourists on the Rwanda genocide tour can also offer information to the tourists with evidences of how people were killed the sites were churches before turning into sites these display the remains of the victims like their clothes, skulls and many more.
Gisenyi Rwanda Genocide Memorial Site: Just like the other sites, the Gisenyi memorial site has displays of the different remains of the victims of the Rwanda genocide. The site has a large number of bodies that were killed but important to note is the grave yard of, Madame Rasmond a friend to Dian fossey. Madame Rasmond Carr was an American humanitarian who ensured that the orphaned children of the Rwandan genocide were well cared for and protected by establishing the Imbabazi orphanage which restored hope in the young ones.
Gisozi Rwanda genocide memorial site: Another genocide memorial site located in Gisozi town which tourists should not miss to visit during their Rwanda genocide tour is the Gisozi Rwanda genocide memorial site is notable for over 300000 people that were killed during the genocide. The site has a library where tourists interested in knowing the events that led to the genocide can be found in the books, the display area of the site where different remains of the people can be found including the bones skulls, and so on. For tourists interested in getting authentic information about the genocide in the area and Rwanda at large, the Gisozi Rwanda genocide memorial site is the site to visit.
Other genocide memorial sites include the Nyanza genocide memorial centre, Bisesero genocide memorial centre Ntarama genocide memorial centre, Camp Kigali Memorial Site, and Nyarubuye genocide memorial centre all of which display the different remains of the victims of the genocide but the most important one of them all is the
Kigali Genocide Museum
The genocide memorial museum is one of the different genocide sites that were established to commemorate the dark times that Rwanda went through during the Rwanda genocide. The Kigali genocide museum is located in Gisenyi town just 9 kilometres from Kigali city, making it easily accessible to tourists. The genocide museum was established with the help of the Aegis trust in an anti-genocide body in the United Kingdom that is focused on preventing the occurrences of genocides in countries.
The aegis trust ensured that a walk/ a tour at the Kigali genocide memorial museum will be one not to forget because the different equipment that was put in place will give tourists an insight and the feel of what really happened during the time of political turmoil and anarchy. With the aid of the organization, the museum has different high-class equipment to make a tour through the genocide much more felt than heard for instance the installation of audio sounds systems, the displays of pictorials and a number of documentations will make a tourists heart bleed for the innocent souls that were lost.
The Kigali genocide museum, unlike other museums, has the best technological advancements and different features which will make the tourists interested in knowing about the Rwanda genocide get authentic and first-hand information especially from the targeted survivors who had a lot to spill in their recordings. The museum has got a number of different sections where tourists can get different information regarding the genocide for example;
The Large exhibition area:
The first exhibition area also the large exhibition area is about the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi. The area gives an insight into the genocide but before that, there are documentation of how Rwanda was before colonization and during the time of colonisation by the Belgian government. How the people were living in harmony with one another without any disputes among themselves. Then follows the colonization era where a number of disputes arose among the Belgian government and the people of Rwanda which later lead to the demand for its independence and then later on after independence with the different desires between the two tribes to rule the republic which led to the tensions amongst one another.
After seeing what really transpired for the occurrence of the Rwanda genocide, tourists will then have an insight of what the genocide was really about what really happened the tactics that the killers used, the victims, what they had to go through, for instance, a number killings were documented which shows how people were slaughtered using machetes. Confessions from some of the killers who were really proud of what their ignorance had led them to do, different videos are played showing how the massacres were carried out on the streets of the country, different bodies lying on the roads, river banks and many more all of which brings pain to the hearts of the people that visit them. Different pictures can also be seen on displays showing the different people that were killed, their last words before their death, the broken dreams of the youths who wanted to be something when they grew older which is quite saddening because they didn’t get the chance to live their dreams.
After tourists get to see what took place during the genocide, they will then have a chance to witness what measures were carried out in order to end the horror that happening in the country, in different pictorials and videos, the Rwanda patriotic front fighting against the extreme Hutus to prevent and bring an end to the injustices that were being carried out in the country. Following all that documentation on life after the Rwanda genocide can be seen where one will see how people were affected, politically, economically, socially and most especially emotionally because the genocide brought a lot of tears and tore many people’s hearts in the country.
The Children Exhibition Area:
The Children’s Room/ exhibition area is dedicated to all the young children whose lives were lost during the genocide. The Hutus were really heartless people who target everyone regardless of the age and sex and the hurting thing about the Rwanda genocide tour while in the Kigali genocide museum is the fact that tourists will see how innocent young souls were killed without any reason children as young as months old were lost in the Rwanda genocide.
The Kigali genocide memorial museum’s children’s room is dedicated to the memory of those that were killed in the Genocide against the Tutsi. This section will bring tears to the eyes of those that pass by it because of the shows how a generation’s and their dreams were stolen and destroyed in just a period of three months.
The world Genocide History Exhibition Area
This area or exhibition section in the Kigali genocide memorial museum also known as the wasted lives section is the one that showcases the different genocides around the world some of the different events that are displayed though have not been identified as genocides however they have much in common with want took place during the 1994 Rwanda genocide, for example, the different killings around the world that are shown include Namibia, Armenia, Cambodia Balkans, and Holocaust. All of which shows what happened around the world. Through the tour, people are able to get a reality check on how hatred among one another can create instability and horror in a country so a Rwanda genocide tour will give tourists the time to check their humanity.
While carrying out the Rwanda genocide tour, tourists that visit the Kigali genocide memorial museum will also visit the different areas which can make sense of your tour that is;
The amphitheater was constructed during the 20thcommemoration of the Rwanda genocide against the Tutsis. The 1,200 seat amphitheater was constructed at the memorial and it is the host to a number of anti-genocide events which a flocked by a number of people interested in knowing the toll of hatred among fellow brothers and sisters in the country. Other humanitarian events are also carried out at the amphitheater educational workshops, dramatic performances, cultural and historical events, and film screenings and for anyone interested in using the amphitheater, bookings are carried out at the reception because it is open to everyone regardless of the tribe.
Burial Place & Gardens:
The Kigali Genocide Memorial museum’s burial grounds and gardens the resting place to more than 259,000 victims of the Genocide, as well as a place of solace for survivors and reflection for visitors. Many tourists, natives come at the Kigali genocide museum’s burial place to mourn the people that were killed who were buried in the mass grave this gives tourists and natives a sense of relief that they have a chance to talk to their loved although they are gone with the presence of the mass grave because some of the people were unable to locate their deceased’s remains.
For tourists interested in carrying out research about the Rwanda genocide, the Kigali genocide memorial museum has a well-stocked library that offers a full range of services including research assistance for those interested in knowing more about the events that led to the genocide, what people had to go through after the genocide and so on. There is also a computer room where people can use during their research with wireless internet for their convenience.
A Rwanda genocide tour, while at the Kigali genocide memorial museum will make tourists go through a lot of emotions like sadness, pain and many more but hope is restored because of the fact that today Rwanda is one of the safest places to travel to without any political instabilities which is as a result of the Rwanda genocide although brought horror and tears to the Rwandans, it made them stronger and united as one.