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The Rwandan Civil War

Dublin Core


The Rwandan Civil War


Rwanda -- History -- Civil war, 1990-1993.


Oral history video clip featuring Alexandre Kimenyi a professor at California State University, Sacramento. This video was originally produced by Media Entertainment, Inc., for the 2000 documentary The Genocide Factor.


Media Entertainment, Inc.


Genocide Factor Collection, Oral History Program, Tampa Library,
University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida.


Tampa, Fla. : University of South Florida Tampa Library.




Kimenyi, Alexandre


Tape number: 4075A


video / mp4




Oral History



Oral History Item Type Metadata


Mallory, Sue


Kimenyi, Alexandre


California State University


You have to understand that there’s a distinction between a civil war and genocide. So, as far as the civil war is concerned, which took place between 1990-1994, many attempts had been made indeed to stop the conflict between the government troops and also the Rwandan Patriotic Army. There was, for instance, a peace accord which was signed in Kinshasa, what is called the Nsele Accord, and the (inaudible), which was signed in Arusha in Tanzania. All of those were attempts to stop the civil war between both the government troops and also the armed opposition.

It was really power sharing. So in other words, the mediators are trying to convince both warring parties to share power, because this was the problem of the civil war, because one group was excluded from being involved in politics because the Hutu thought (inaudible). But unfortunately, they are not allowed to participate in the political process. There was also a big population of refugees who had fled the country before 1992. The government did not want them to come back. Actually, this was one of the reasons the civil war took place in 1990.

During the civil war, the government was fighting against an armed opposition. So the armed opposition are called the RPF, Rwandan Patriotic Army; consisted mostly of refugees who had fled the country between 1959 and 1990. And also you had the people, of course, inside the country, Hutus who were not satisfied with the politics of that time, because there was only one particular party. There was a military government. So, all those forces joined together to fight the government. So yeah, the warring groups, as I said, were the government and the opposition.

As I said, we should not confuse the civil war and genocide. So, as I said, the civil war is when you have two groups fighting each other, armed forces. In the case of genocide, we have a case where the government was killing systematically one specific group in noncombat zones. So, it’s genocide where the government was killing unarmed civilians, children, women, old people, young people, and so on. So as I said, we should not confuse the two things.

Original Format

Beta tape




Media Entertainment, Inc., “The Rwandan Civil War,” USF Library Special & Digital Collections Exhibits, accessed October 22, 2020,