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Many Rwandans had choice, Dusabimana made extraordinary one-Clinton

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The US Ambassador to Rwanda Hon. W. Stuart Symington with Josephine Dusabimana

By our staff writer.

KIGALI- US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has praised Josephine Dusabimana, a Rwandan woman who saved Tutsi who were hunted to be killed, as a “brave hero”.

Speaking via video conference, Secretary Clinton said the heroism of people like Dusabimana, 55, has helped to build the current society where all people live in peace in Rwanda.

“You saved lives, you hid them in your bedroom risking the lives of your family and you helped them to flee to DR Congo. For that act of bravery, we award you this certificate of person of courage,” Clinton said.

Josephine Dusabimana, from Kibuye, gave shelter to a series of Tutsi during Genocide and creatively helped six people to escape to the then safe territory of DR Congo (Two were slaughtered before her eyes).

The honour is part of a series of events planned by the U.S. government to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the 1951 UN Refugee Convention in June. U.S. embassies in Kigali, Dakar (Senegal), and Sarajevo (Bosnia and Herzegovina) have participated in the video conference.

“I am a Hutu woman. I think I did what I was supposed to do. People were being killed without any charge, and I decided to mobilize my family to hide our people who were said to be Tutsi,” Dusabimana said.

At the US embassy in Senegal, Clinton also awarded the family of Capt. Mbaye Diagne with the same certificate of person of courage.

The Senegalese officer, a member of UN peace-keeping operation in Rwanda, Capt. Mbaye saved more than 600 trapped Tutsi Rwandans and repeatedly transported them to safety, past roadblocks manned by Genocide killers.

The Senegalese peacekeeper Capt. Mbaye was killed during the genocide when a mortar shell landed next to his jeep while on a peace mission. Capt Mbaye was last year awarded posthumously by Rwanda the ‘campaign against genocide medal’ for having saved many lives as he worked as a military observer under UNAMIR.

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16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. Hakizimana

    April 6, 2011 at 10:47 PM

    My heart goes to all the Rwandan peace loving people who lost their lives, to those who lost their beloved ones in the heinous genocide, i pay tribute to all the affected Tutsis. Never again shall we allow such atrocities to occur

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