n African Journal on Conflict Resolution - Longing for home : pre-genocide and post-genocide refugees in Rwanda

Volume 12, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1562-6997


Rwanda has a history of violent conflict resulting in mass exoduses of people to neighbouring countries, both prior to the 1994 genocide and after it. This article will consider the experiences of Rwandan refugees in terms of their relationship to their home country. Their differing attitudes towards Rwanda after the genocide will be explored through four life stories that were collected between 2007 and 2009. Two of these life stories are from Rwandan Tutsi who were refugees in Uganda until 1994 and returned to Rwanda after the genocide. The other two are from Rwandan Hutu who have been refugees since the late1990s. Their relationship to Rwanda while being refugees and their experience of what it means to be a refugee are significant for their differences and for their similarities. This article will explore these and will argue that the similarity of the refugee experience may open the way for dialogue between those still in exile and those within Rwanda. In the case of all four refugees, there is a shared desire for a place to call home.

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