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17 - Gacaca in Rwanda

Customary Law in Case of Genocide

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 February 2012

Roelof H. Haveman
Affiliation:
International Development Law Organization
Jeanmarie Fenrich
Affiliation:
School of Law, Fordham University, United States of America
Paolo Galizzi
Affiliation:
School of Law, Fordham University, United States of America
Tracy E. Higgins
Affiliation:
School of Law, Fordham University, United States of America
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Summary

Introduction: A Day in Court

A day in August, 2009, Aimable, a friend since my arrival in Rwanda, has asked me to join him to the gacaca where the killers of his family will stand trial. He was not in the country when the genocide started on April 6, 1994. Just a few hours before the airplane of the president was shot down – the catalyst event that started the genocide – he left the country. At the time, he was studying law in Kigali. During the Easter holidays, he and a girlfriend paid his family a visit. His friend had insisted on leaving the country immediately, totally in panic and without any clear reason. His family was angry about him leaving so soon, because they had not seen him for a long time. Three days later, his entire family was dead.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2011

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References

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