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    UNIS/SGSM/333
    27 March 2012

    United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:

    "Learning from History to Shape a Bright Future"

    Message on the 18th Anniversary of the Genocide in Rwanda,
    7 April 2012

    VIENNA, 7 April (UN Information Service) - Today, we mark the 18th anniversary of the genocide in Rwanda. We remember the more than 800,000 innocent people who lost their lives.

    This year's theme is "learning from history to shape a bright future". Rwanda has learned from the appalling tragedy of 1994. So has the world.

    Rwanda is making progress towards building a more peaceful and just society. The international community is striving to ensure that similar tragedies never happen again.

    The United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda delivered the first-ever verdicts in relation to genocide by an international court, and continues to pursue justice and accountability. The International Criminal Court has become an effective deterrent for would-be perpetrators of grave crimes.

    To all those around the world who persist in suppressing their fellow citizens crying out for dignity and freedom, we send a clear message: justice will be done. Impunity must become a relic of the past.

    We are also working to strengthen conflict prevention and mediation, and to uphold the responsibility to protect.

    Preventing genocide is a collective obligation. Let us continue to work together to ensure a future forever free of genocide. This would be the most fitting way to remember those lost in Rwanda 18 years ago, and to honour the resilience of the survivors.

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