Outreach Programme on the 1994 Genocide Against
the Tutsi in Rwanda and the United Nations

The Lid is On — UN Radio Podcast
How rape became an act of genocide.

Tribunal Archives

Judicial Archives of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR)

Which Led to

Dr. Alison Des Forges

Dr. Alison Des Forges was an academic historian specializing in African history. She dedicated her life to working on Rwanda, and was a leading expert on the 1994 Rwanda genocide and its aftermath. She was a senior adviser to Human Rights Watch's Africa division for almost two decades. She published numerous scholarly papers and reports in the field of Rwandan history and the conflicts in Africa’s Great Lakes region.


Dr. Des Forges testified in ten cases before the ICTR, spending a total of over one hundred days on the stand. Her eloquent testimony provides valuable insight into the causes of the Rwandan genocide of 1994.

A clear and comprehensive source of information about the conditions which led to the genocide in Rwanda.

11 February 1997


12 February 1997

13 February 1997

18 February 1997

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Indictment Against Jean Paul Akayesu

Rape and Sexual Violence as Crimes Against Humanity


The indictment against Jean Paul Akayesu, bourgmestre (mayor) of the Taba commune, was amended to include rape and sexual violence as crimes against humanity.

By finding that rape can constitute genocide, the ICTR's Trial Chamber set an important precedent in international criminal law. Judge Navanethem Pillay made the following statement after the delivery of the judgement

From time immemorial, rape has been regarded as spoils of war. Now it will be considered a war crime. We want to send out a strong message that rape is no longer a trophy of war.

Major-General Roméo Dallaire's Testimony

Major-General Roméo Dallaire was the Force Commander for the UNAMIR (the UN Assistance Mission in Rwanda) in 1994. His testimony in the Akayesu case describes the challenges faced by the mission in its attempts to fulfil its mandate of implementing the Arusha peace accords and maintaining peace in Rwanda.

Witness Testimonies

The courageous testimonies of witnesses provided the evidence required for the ICTR's Trial Chamber to find Akayesu guilty of rape.


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Appearance and Judgment of Jean Kambanda

Appearance and Judgment of Jean Kambanda, Prime Minister of the interim government of the Republic of Rwanda on 9 April 1994.

Despite his guilty plea and initial willingness to cooperate with the prosecution, he was sentenced to life imprisonment.

01 May 1998


04 September 1998


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Appearance and Plea of André Rwamakuba

André Rwamakuba was the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education in Rwanda during the genocide. In the judgement delivered on 20 September 2006, he was acquitted of all charges.

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UN Radio Programmes

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