Kigali, November 9th 2023
- The President of the United States of America, His Excellency Joe Biden
- The President of France, His Excellency Emmanuel Macron
- The Prime Minister of Belgium, His Excellency Alexander De Croo
- Antony Blinken, Secretary of State – USA
- António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations
- The Presidency trio of the European Union: Spain (July–December 2023); Belgium (January–June 2024); Hungary (July–December 2024)
- Mrs. Matilda Schedwin, Deputy Head of Delegation, Head of Political, Press, and Information Section | Delegation of the European Union in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
- Antoine Anfre, Ambassador of France to Rwanda
- The Presidency of the African Union
- The Presidency and the General Secretariat of the East African Community
- The Presidency and the General Secretariat of the Southern African Development Community (SADC).
- His Excellency, Mr. President of Rwanda, Paul Kagame
- His Excellency, Mr. President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Félix Tshisekedi
- His Excellency, Mr. President of Uganda, Yoweri Museveni
- His Excellency, Mr. President of Burundi, Evariste Ndayishimiye (Current President of the East African Community)
- Her Excellency, Madam President of Tanzania, Samia Suluhu
Thirty years ago, I was a Rwandan little girl full of life and dreams.
Unfortunately, those dreams crumbled in 1994, with the Genocide against the Tutsi. An event that marked my entire life, leaving me and millions of Rwandans with countless nightmares to live with.
The events of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi began with propaganda, incitement to hatred, harassment, rapes, killings, burning of houses, and displacement. As the countless massacres began, and the international community ignored the suffering of my people, I found myself wandering in marshes, forests, abandoned fields, carrying my younger brother, suffering from hunger, forced to eat grass and drink dirty marsh water filled with the bodies of innocent victims.
Yet, I survived. I survived while the population of my country was decimated by close to one million people. One million human lives. One million voices made silent by machetes and bullets and even more hideous killing tools.
The leaders of the free world stood by and did nothing. After the atrocities of the genocide in 1994 against the Tutsis, they all had to face their shameful passiveness, and ever since the international community has pledged a promise of absolution by committing their actions to two words: “Never Again!”.
Years later, miraculously, I overcame the consequences of the Genocide. I managed to rebuild some fragments of my dreams, and passionately, driven by the wish of giving a voice to the voiceless, I became a journalist. And now, I find myself covering the tragic repetition of similar events committed by the same individuals in the East of Congo.
It’s clear that this kind of conflict leading to genocide has never ceased to exist. The conflict has progressively escalated with impunity towards those who fled Rwanda after committing the genocide against the Tutsi in 1994, and their descendants or adherents seem to have no qualms about taking the lives of their victims.
Genocide seems to be ongoing in this neighboring country, where the Congolese population appears to have been infected by this incurable virus of genocide. Currently, innocents continue to perish by those human hunters’ machetes, heavy artillery of the government coalition FARDC-WAZALENDO-FDLR-NYATURA-Mai Mai-Mercenaries, and more.
Shamelessly and publicly, the UN (MONUSCO) soldier, declared that he will fight with FARDC and open fire on the M23, knowing clearly that this same FARDC is openly operating with FDLR, the Rwandan genocidaires who were officially labeled as “terrorists”.
The reports my colleague and I have gathered over the months reveal the extent of the horror, with torn, displaced, and scattered families, children wandering alone, a war-torn land without humanitarian organizations, raped women and girls, burned or looted houses of Congolese Tutsis, live stokes systematic destruction, and the racism propaganda prepared and applied by the Congolese government.
Journalists are intimidated, imprisoned, or even aiding in this propaganda, rather than upholding their profession against it.
All of this is happening under the eyes of foreign observers and the international community that has promised that such a situation would never be repeated.
Unfortunately, the world seems, yet again, to be closing its eyes to what is happening in the Kivu region.
I address you as a journalist, but more importantly, as a deeply concerned human being about the tragedy that is unfolding in Congo. The horrors of the genocide that have afflicted this country for too long can no longer be ignored. As a witness to the immeasurable suffering endured by the Congolese, I feel a moral duty to request your immediate action.
The situation in the Congo demands an unprecedented international mobilization. Resources and attention must be directed towards protecting civilians, resolving conflicts, bringing those responsible for these atrocities to justice, and establishing lasting peace. The international community has a duty to unite to end this unbearable violence.
I implore you to take concrete measures to end this tragedy. Peace in Congo is possible, but it requires a firm commitment from all of us. As a reader or influential actor, you have the capacity to make a difference.
We write numerous articles and produce a multitude of video reports on https://youtube.com/@kivupressagency1155 and on our blog https://kivu-press-agency.ghost.io/ to expose and demonstrate the reality with firsthand testimonies.
Please consider my request and conduct your own field research to see the reality and stop this nightmare before it’s too late, and the entire East African region becomes a battlefield that will scar the world and its new generation.
I understand that most foreign observers are hesitant to set foot in this treacherous terrain, yet it’s also clear that the world will never stop being worse if we do not join our powers to make it better.
Let’s not forget that silence equals complicity. Let’s act now to end the genocide in Congo and prevent future atrocities.
Please do not forget your promises to the world. “Never Again!”
Thank you for considering this urgent call to action.
Adeline Umutoni, Committed Journalist