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Rwanda is a poor East African nation with a population of roughly 8 million, known mostly for its multiple genocides wages between its Hutu and Tutsi ethnic groups. The minority Tutsi's make up roughly 10-15% of the population and from the 16th century to 1959 were the hereditary ruling class of the nation who presided over the Hutus who had in turn taken the land from the Twa Pygmies (about 1% of the population) in the distant past. Most recently Hutu militias killed about a million Tutsis in 1994. There was another major massacre of Tutsis in 1963 after an unsuccessful coup attempt led by Tutsis.

Burundi (which has a population of about 7 million) shares a common history with Rwanda until 1962 when it seperated from Rwanda and shares a similar history of ethnic strife interrelated with the strife in its Northen neighbor. A failed Hutu rebellion there left 10,000 Tutsis and 150,000 Hutus dead in 1972-1973 and about 150,000 people were killed from 1993-1996 in ethnic violence there, not unrelated to the Rwandan genocide.

External Links

  • Country Guides: Rwanda
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