Kigali, 28 August 2008 (FH) - A census carried out by Rwandan authorities and associations of survivors estimate the number of survivors of the 1994 genocide still alive to be 309 368, reports Hirondelle Agency.

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This first official census was carried out jointly by the ministry that handles social affairs, associations of genocide survivors and the National Statistics Institute of Rwanda. The previous surveys had been highly criticized by survivor associations. A survivor is defined as a person who was wanted between October 1990 and December 1994 because of their ethnic or political affiliation.

According to the figures published on Monday, 66% of survivors are aged between 13 and 35; while 2 out of 10 women are widowed. For the first time, a regional inequality was noticeable. Most of the survivors are in the districts of Gasabo, in Kigali and Rusizi, in the southwest; which respectively have 26 349 and 24 109 genocide survivors listed.

The districts of Gakenke and Burera, in north, have registered the lowest number of survivors with 1,113 and 478 persons respectively.

If, proportionally, one counts more male orphans (22.7%) than female orphans (19.8%). There are ten times more widows (16.4% of women survivors) than widowers, who account for hardly 1.7% of male survivors, according to the survey. Orphans account for 69.3% of the category of vulnerable survivors.

As a whole, the results of the census report a total of 93,855 child genocide survivors aged from 13 to 20 years, whereas in the whole of this category, more than half (55.5%) are single, 30% are married and 12.4% are widowed.

According to the report, widowers and handicapped persons are proportionally the most numerous to have reported respiratory infections (9.9% and 9.6%). In terms of accidents and injuries, the handicapped were the most affected (10.7%) than any other category of survivors.

Rwanda suffered a genocide in 1994 during which, according to the United Nations, more than 800 000 victims, primarily ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus, were killed.


© Hirondelle News Agency