Genocide was first defined by the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide as “the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group. Genocide is never spontaneous. In Rwanda, the Genocide Against the Tutsi was a planned and systematic attempt at exterminate the Tutsi. The 1994 Genocide Against the Tutsi was one of the fasted known to history with one million men, women and children killed in three months. By the end of the genocide, over 80% of the Tutsi population had been killed. The following museums

To ensure that the victims are never forgotten, memorial centers have been built across Rwanda. To read more about the Genocide Against the Tutsi follow this link

The Kigali Memorial Centre

It was opened on the 10th Anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide, in April 2004. The Centre is built on a site where over 250,000 people are buried. These graves are a clear reminder of the cost of ignorance. The Centre is a permanent memorial to those who fell victim to the genocide and serves as a place for people to grieve those they lost.

Murambi Memorial Centre

A school where 27,000 people were killed. A stark, shocking monument, hundreds of corpses are temporarily preserved and currently displayed in the school. The memorial has been developed as a permanent exhibition to the genocide. It documents from pre-colonial times to the more recent history of the 1994 genocide. The design focuses on developing a memorial from which the school children and local community can benefit. With the construction of the centre at Murambi in its final stages of completion, it is currently planned that its official opening will take place later this year.

Nyamata Memorial Site

This site is a church where around 2,500 people were killed and it has become emblematic of the barbaric treatment of women during the genocide. In the church at Nyamata, there will be graphic and audio-visual displays that will focus particularly on the mass rape, brutalization of women and the use of HIV as a deliberate weapon of genocide.

Ntarama Memorial Site

Ntarama is a town in the rural Kigali Province, situated in an area known as Bugesera. The association of Bugesera with genocidal development is a long one. For decades, there have been forced population movements and frequent massacres. About an hour’s drive southwards from Rwanda’s capital city, Kigali, the red-brick church at Ntarama is peacefully situated, shadowed by acacia trees. Ntarama Church, however, is the site where some of the most brutal killings of the 1994 Rwandan genocide took place. The church at Ntarama was seen as a safe place by almost 5000 people, many of whom were women and children and who went there for sanctuary. But Ntarama was not a safe place. The victims of the genocide remain there, their bones still strewn with lifeless chaos where they fell nearly ten years ago. Their belongings cover the floor; clothes, suitcases, a child’s white sock - the last remnants of a desperate flight for life.

Bisesero Memorial Site

Bisesero is set in the hills of the Kibuye province of West Rwanda where some 30,000 people were killed. The region around Bisesero has become known for the acts of resistance from Tutsis who tried to organize themselves against the massacre. This was mostly unsuccessful as they were fighting with sticks against well-armed and trained soldiers.

Nyanza Memorial Site

At the start of the genocide in April 1994, over 2,000 Tutsis took refuge in ETO school on the outskirts of Kigali, protected by the United Nations Peace Keeping force. Following the withdrawal of the UN, refugees were marched up the road to Nyanza where they were all butchered. Today, this site, marked by simple wooden crosses, is symbolic of the abandonment of Rwanda by the International Community. Each year on April 11th, a memorial ceremony takes place on the site where the deserted refugees were murdered in cold blood.

Nyarubuye Memorial Site

A convent and school where 20,000 people were killed. These people had been trying to escape over the border to Tanzania. During 2003, the school became functional again; the convent, however, remains empty, apart from the bones of the victims, and will be turned into a memorial and education centre.