Building peace in the minds of men and women

International Day of Reflection on the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda

7 April

On 7 April, UNESCO commemorates the International Day of Reflection on the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda, which was established by the United Nations General Assembly in 2003. The date marks the beginning of the genocide perpetrated against members of the Tutsi minority by the Hutu extremist-led government. Within just over 100 days, more than 1 million Tutsi were systematically murdered. Moderate Hutu and others who opposed the massacres were also killed during this period.

UNESCO is committed to promote education about genocides as a means to sensitize learners for the causes, dynamics and consequences of such crimes and to strengthen their resilience against all forms of discrimination.

2021 commemorations

"On this day, we honour those who were murdered, we reflect on the suffering and we recognize the resilience of those who have survived. As we join in solidarity with people of Rwanda, we must take a hard look at today's world and ensure that we heed the lessons of 27 years ago." - Message from United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres

On the occasion of the International Day, UNESCO is organizing a panel discussion entitled From hate speech to genocide: lessons from the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda to mark the 27th anniversary of the start of the genocide. The event will take place online on 7 April 2021.

The commemoration is being organized by UNESCO and the University of Southern California Shoah Foundation UNESCO Chair on Genocide Education, with the Permanent Delegation of Rwanda to UNESCO, in partnership with Global Action Against Mass Atrocity Crimes (GAAMAC).

Background

  • UN Resolution 58/234 - International Day of Reflection on the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda (2003)
  • UN Security Council Resolution 2150 (2014) - Recommitment to Fight against Genocide
  • UN draft resolution 72/L.31 - International Day of Reflection on the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda, adopted 26 January 2018
  • Previous commemorations : 202020192014
  • All UNESCO international days and weeks