[Human rights] Rwanda Genocide, Rohingya Migrants & Chagos People

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IAS Mock Interviews
  1. D1: Rwanda Genocide & French involvement
  2. D2: Rohingya illegal migrants in India
  3. D3: Chagos people: Rehabilitation

D1: Rwanda Genocide & French involvement

(Interview Q.) What do you know about Rwanda Genocide? Why has France decided not to participate in its remembrance event?

  • Rwanda is a landlocked country in central Africa
  • Its Capital is Kigali
  • Population composition: Hutus – majority, Tutsi –Minority.

Map Rwanda

Events leading to Genocide
Post WW1
  • Originally Rwanda was German colony.
  • But after defeat of Germany in WW1, it was transferred to Belgium.
  • Belgium favoured Tutsi over Hutus- divide and rule.
1959Hutu revolution, lot of Tutsi forced to flee country. Later form a rebel group called RPF (Rwandan Patriotic Front).
1962Rwanda gained independence Hutu dominate government.
1992Tutsi rebels invaded Rwanda from Uganda.Ceasefire agreement between Rwandan govt. and RPF. Transition govt. formed, now Hutu (majority) extremist angry, they want a “pure Hutu state”.
Late 1992Tension increased between Hutus (majority) vs and Tutsi (Minority)
1994
  • The (Hutu) president of Rwanda shot dead. Civil war erupts.
  • April 6 to July 18: Hutu extremist (Interahamwe) try to eliminate entire Tutsi population.
  • ~8 lakh people killed in this genocide.
  • Tutsi also retaliated, the war ended when Tutsi rebels defeated Hutu militia, took control over Rwanda and forced Hutus to flee to Congo as refugee.

Rwanda Genocide

World leaders turned blind eye

  • France, Belgium, USA and UN kept silence on the genocide.
  • Many countries refused to acknowledge it as a “genocide”, or putting any sanctions / condemnation against the Rwanda government.
  • UN Security Council delayed sending UN peace keeping force in Rwanda (UNAMIR).
  • UN approved French intervention in Rwanda for humanisation purpose. But French forces helped some of the genocide plotters to escape.

Verdict

  • 1995: International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) @Tanzania beings trial.
  • 2008: 3 Rwandan military officers convicted for plotting genocide

French Connection

  • France maintained close diplomatic ties with Hutu dominated govt. ever since they gained independence in 62.
  • During 1994’s civil war, France sent forces only after it felt  that Tutsi rebels (minority) will defeat the Hutu militia (Majority)
  • France saved many Hutu plotters of Genocide, even gave them shelter/asylum in France    .
  • Some even blame that France was actively knew and helped Hutus to plot this genocide.

Remembrance event

  • 1994 = Genocide happened, therefore 2014 = 20th anniversary.
  • In April 2014, The remembrance ceremony was held
  • but Rwanda’s President (Paul Kagame) barred French Ambassador from participating. Rwandan President accuses that French were involved in planning the genocide, therefore have no moral right to participate in this remembrance event.
  • In retaliation, France also cancelled visit of his Justice Minister to Rwanda.

Earlier, Vice President of India gave a speech at WW-I seminar. He mentioned that “the outcomes of WWI still haunts the world even today.” This is one such example. Genocide was the extreme outcome of the hatred brewed between Hutu & Tutsi by the imperial powers during & after WW1.

D2: Rohingya illegal migrants in India

Q. Examine the problem Rohingya migrant influx in India and suggest remedies. [100 words]

Rohingya Muslims are illegally migrating to India via Bangladesh, due to on-going tussle with Buddhist in their native land, Rakhine in Myanmar. However, Indian authorities cannot sent them back because neither Myanmar or Bangladesh willing to recognizes them.

  • Some of these migrants involved with Lashkar-e-Toiba & other militant groups active in Chittagong hills in Bangladesh, who to use the plight of Rohingyas to increase hostility among India, Bangladesh and Myanmar.
  • LeT even created an outfit “Difa-E-Muslman” in Myanmar for this.

Suggestions:

  • Rohingya migrants in India need to be segregated, rehabilitated.
  • Indian authorities should negotiate the issue with Myanmar for their possible resettlement.
  • India should also ask UN Human rights council to intervene.

India should firmly spell that no state should evade its responsibility of giving protection and equal rights to its minority population.
~130 words.
Rohingyas migration map

D3: Chagos people: Rehabilitation

Chagos Archipelago

  • Chagos Island archipelago = ~70 islands between Madives and Maurititus (Indian ocean)
  • Diego Garcia=largest island of Chagos Archipelago.
  • Chagos Islands are under British Overseas territories. (other examples Falkland Islands and Gibraltar.)
  • Chagossian islands are coral islands with rich biodiversity. British declared them as world’s largest Marine reserve in 2010.
  • Back in 70s, UK had evicted local tribes to make room for US military base in Diego Garcia.

Visit Mrunal.org/Diplomacy for entire list articles on Diplomacy & International relations (IR) for Mains GS2 paper of UPSC Civil service Exam.

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