Why Rwanda Doesn't Celebrate Independence Day

On July 1, Rwanda marks 60 years of independence from Belgium. Unlike other African countries that celebrate with pomp and festivities, Independence Day in Rwanda is a somewhat muted affair. Despite it being a public holiday, no national celebrations are being held to mark the occasion.

Instead, the Rwandan government says that the day is incorporated into Liberation Day - or Kwibohora, as it is known locally - three days later.

Liberation Day commemorates the victory of the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) led by President Paul Kagame over the former dictatorship of Juvenal Habyarimana and the Rwandan Armed Forces in the Rwandan Civil War.

The RPF victory ultimately ended the 1994 Tutsi genocide in Rwanda, in which Hutu extremists killed an estimated 800,000 Tutsi and moderate Hutu in 100 days. As a result, more than 2 million Rwandans fled the country, writes Chrispin Mwakideu for Deutsche Welle.

President Paul Kagame.

AllAfrica publishes around 600 reports a day from more than 100 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.

X