The Rwandan Declassification Collection not only concerns Rwanda, but many of the other states in Central Africa and the African Great Lake region. The Rwandan Genocide (as well as civil war in Burundi) created a huge population of refugees and displaced persons that contributed to the destabilization of the entire region. The role of the international community and its response to events in Rwanda is described throughout the collection, including the actions of Belgium and France; the United Nations (UN), the Organization of African Unity (OAU), and the European Union (EU); non-government organizations; and the United States.
Arusha Accords and the Peace Process – this collection consists of documents concerning peace negotiations between the government of Rwanda and the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) to end the Rwandan Civil War that began in October 1990 when the RPF invaded Rwanda from neighboring Uganda. The collection begins in April 1992 with the announcement by Rwandan President Juvénal Habyarimana of a new multi-party transition government and concludes with the signing of the Arusha Accords in Arusha, Tanzania in August 1993.
Transition and the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR) – this collection consists of documents concerning the implementation of the Arusha Accords (which provided the blueprint for a 22-month transition period ending in multi-party democratic national elections) and the United Nations Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR) to help implement the plan. The collection begins just after the signing of the Arusha Accords in August 1993 and ends with the death of Juvénal Habyarimana and Burundian President Cyprien Ntaryamira in a plane crash on April 6, 1994.
The Rwandan Genocide – this collection of documents concerns the mass murder of an estimated 800,000 Tutsi and moderate Hutus in Rwanda between April and July 1994 after an airplane carrying Rwandan President Juvénal Habyarimana and Burundian President Cyprien Ntaryamira was shot down as it prepared to land in Kigali, Rwanda on April 6. The genocide did not end until the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF), composed mostly of Tutsi, defeated the Hutu dominated militias and government forces of Rwanda in July 1994. The collection includes material covering the reaction of and the actions by the international community, particularly the Belgians and French.
War Crimes, Human Rights Monitors, and the International Tribunal for Rwanda – this collection concerns the establishment of the International Tribunal for Rwanda for the prosecution of persons responsible for genocide and other serious violations of international humanitarian law. The collection includes documents on the detention of Rwandan war criminals, arrests and prison conditions, developing a justice system in Rwanda, and the United Nations Human Rights Field Operation in Rwanda.
Internal Displacement and the Great Lakes Refugee Crisis
These collections contain material on the humanitarian disaster facing a large number of displaced individuals throughout the African Great Lakes Region following the Rwandan Genocide. The documents in these collections include information on the response to the crisis by the international community, including relief efforts by France, the United States, the United Nations, and non-government organizations. These collections concern the efforts to bring stability to Rwanda; to create conditions for repatriation; security in refugee and internally displaced persons (IDP) camps; and the increased instability throughout the Great Lakes Region, particularly Zaire (Democratic Republic of the Congo) and Burundi.