Arusha, April 7, 2010 (FH) - On the sixteenth anniversary of the start of the Rwandan genocide, President Paul Kagame on Wednesday called upon his fellow citizens to commemorate "upright, on our feet" the 1994 mass killings of Tutsis, asserting that the future of the Nation depended on it.

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"We must mourn but upright, on our feet", the Head of state said in Kinyarwanda to thousands of people gathered at the national stadium in Kigali. "We must find in our grief enough strength to build our future. We have the capacity to achieve this goal. Always keep that in mind: building our future is our concern".

"There is no alternative. We have to help each other so as to prevent those responsible for our pain from finding reasons to triumph", Paul Kagame explained in his speech which was broadcasted live on national radio and TV.

He also claimed that "bad Rwandan leaders, bad politicians" had been the root cause of the genocide.

He did not spare the international community either. Switching briefly into English, he added: « The convergence of national bad politics and international bad politics resulted in what we commemorate today".

He then urged Rwandans to "change national politics" as they could not change international politics.

Finally, Paul Kagame sharply attacked unspecified international organizations, declaring that his country had not lessons to receive from them with respect to human rights and democracy.

The official opening ceremony launched a week of national mourning, until April 13.


© Hirondelle News Agency