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     Home > Justice & Peace >  2013-10-05 18:42:20
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Christians at a Peace Seminar in Rwanda call for the promotion of a culture of Peace in the Great Lakes Region of Africa

A seminar on the promotion of peace in the Great Lakes Region of Africa was held in the Rwandan town of Cyangugu on Tuesday, October 1st. It was organised by the Commission for Justice and Peace of the Catholic diocese of Cyangugu and was attended by priests, bishops, lay people and the religious from Rwanda and neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo, as well as by Rwandan government officials. The participants were guided by the Apostolic Exhortation Africae Munus in their discussions. In a communique released after the seminar, the participants appealed to the ordinary people and to the governments of the region to double efforts in promoting peace and in using dialogue to resolve conflicts. They condemned violence and impunity. The Great Lakes Region has been a centre of deadly armed conflicts since 1990. In 1994 Rwandan Hutu Interahamwe militias killed more than 800,000 people in what is today known as the 1994 Rwandan genocide. This was followed by fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo in which eight African countries got involved by sending troops. More than two million people were killed in that war. The war has continued in different ways to date, concentrating mainly in the north Kivu province. Another war took place in Burundi from 1993. It ended in 2005 after the intervention of the international community. It had, however, killed more than 300,000 people.


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