April 7, 2004
The New York Times

Since '94 Horror, Rwandans Turn Toward Islam

by Marc Lacey

KIGALI, Rwanda, April 6 -- When 800,000 of their countrymen were killed in massacres that began 10 years ago this week, many Rwandans lost faith not only in their government but in their religion as well. Today, in what is still a predominantly Catholic country, Islam is the fastest growing religion.

Roman Catholicism has been the dominant faith in Rwanda for more than a century. But many people, disgusted by the role that some priests and nuns played in the killing frenzy, have shunned organized religion altogether, and many more have turned to Islam. . . .

The Muslim community now boasts so many converts that it has had to embark on a crash campaign to build new mosques to accommodate all of the faithful. About 500 mosques are scattered throughout Rwanda, about double the number that existed a decade ago.

Although no accurate census has been done, Muslims leaders in Rwanda estimate that they have about a million followers, or about 15 percent of the population. That, too, would represent a doubling of their numbers in the past 10 years. . . .


Eric Margolis, "Onward Christian Soldiers," The Wisdom Fund, December 2, 1996

Enver Masud, "If Hutus And Tutsis Were Muslim Media Would Say So," The Wisdom Fund, December 10, 1996

Eric Margolis, "Fire And Sword In The Sudan," The Toronto Sun, January 27, 1997

Eric Margolis, "The Great Race For Africa Resumes," The Toronto Sun, March 9, 1997

David Usborne, "UN says war in Congo is fuelled by foreign firms," Independent, October 31, 2003

Brian Smith, "Uganda: Hundreds of civilians massacred by Lord's Resistance Army," World Socialist Web Site, March 1, 2004

Rory Carroll, "US chose to ignore Rwandan genocide," Guardian, March 31, 2004

"'Ethnic Cleansing' in Sudan?," BBC News, April 3, 2004

Rory Carroll, "Rwanda army masses on Congo border: Conflict looms in row over clandestine mining of mineral riches," The Observer, November 28, 2004

Meera Selva, "Ugandan chief of Lord's Army faces war crimes trial," Independent, October 7, 2005

Linda Melvern, "French accused of complicity in genocide that killed a million in Rwanda," Independent, November 5, 2006

[Stop suggesting that there is something wrong with Muslims that they keep producing terrorists. All the major world faiths produce violent people. In the Rwanda genocide of the 1990s, Christian Hutus murdered between 500,000 and 1 million other people, and the Christian churches were deeply involved in enabling this slaughter.--Juan Cole, "How Not to Talk About Muslims After a Terrorist Attack,", March 23, 2016]

[Washington not only ignored Uganda's assistance to the Rwandan rebels, it also ramped up military and development aid to Museveni and then hailed him as a peacemaker once the genocide was underway.--Helen C Epstein, "America's secret role in the Rwandan genocide,", September 12, 2017]

[A report commissioned by the Rwandan government concludes that the French government bears "significant' responsibility for "enabling a foreseeable genocide" that left more than 800,000 dead in 1994--Sylvie Corbet, "Rwanda report blames France for 'enabling' the 1994 genocide," Associated Press, April 19, 2021]

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