We, Rwandan refugees and friends of Rwanda, request the United Nations High Commission for Refugees not to apply the cessation clause to Rwandan refugee protection status as it is currently exploring that option.
Conditions that sent many Rwandan citizens in exile are far from ceasing to exist and in some areas, have even become worse. Though the Rwandan refugee crisis has been cyclical since 1959, from the last massive exodus of Rwandans in 1994, the current government led by General Paul Kagame hasn’t engaged in any substantive effort to set conditions that will encourage refugees to return home voluntarily but rather used tactics of coercion and subversion to get some refugees, primarily from the neighboring countries, to return while on the other hand it set new threatening actions and speeches that sent more people in exile.
Here are few tangible non-exhaustive examples to depict the most recent threats on refugees:
• Just as recent as May 22, 2011, according to the BBC Newsnight – the British Police in London gave a warning to two prominent Rwandan refugees that they had reliable sources confirming that the government of Rwanda was hunting them down and that their lives could be in danger. For many Rwandan refugees, this is rather a common practice by the Rwandan government in a number of neighboring countries.
• On April 13, 2010, when presiding the swearing in ceremony of high ranking military officers before the Parliament, President Kagame compared Rwandans who were fleeing the country to human waste being excreted. And he added “Those who do well for the country [as well as] understanding the role they have, the country owns them…they live in it. But for the waste, the country throws them out. These are things that are automatic. If that is how it’s supposed to be, so be it.”
We, the undersigned, call on the United Nations High Commission for Refugees to keep the Rwandan refugee protection status in place as there are many refugees whose lives are still threatened and can’t safely return to their homeland.
Nous, soussignés, demandons à la Commission des Nations Unies pour les Réfugiés pour maintenir le statut de protection de réfugié rwandais en place car il y a beaucoup de réfugiés dont la vie est toujours menacée et ne peuvent retourner en toute sécurité dans leur patrie.
The Keep the Rwandan Refugee Protection Status in Place petition to UNHCR was written by Rwandan Refugee and is in the category Human Rights at GoPetition.