Rwanda

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Overview
<p>Rwanda&rsquo;s history is one marred with perpetual civil war between the majority population of native Hutu people, who are peasant farmers, and the minority population of Tutsi, who arrived from the Horn of Africa in the 15th century. In 1894, the Germans and missionaries known as the &ldquo;White Fathers&rdquo; colonized Rwanda and made it a German protectorate. The Germans favored the Tutsi over the Hutu and put the Tutsis into power to operate as proxy rulers. The Tutsi ruling class established a monarchy and formed a feudal society, subjugating the Hutus into serfdom. In 1915, Belgian troops chased the Germans out of the country and took over, continuing Germany&rsquo;s support for the Tutsi faction until the Hutu Revolution of 1959. Violence broke out and many fled the country, but in 1962, Rwanda was granted full independence under a leader who advanced a Hutu-favoring agenda. However, widespread corruption resulted in a military takeover of the government in 1973, resulting in one-party state.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 1990, the Rwandan Patriotic Army, comprised of mostly Tutsi exiles, invaded the nation from their base in Uganda, beginning a two-year civil war. A cease-fire was signed, but lasted less than two years. On April 6, 1994, an airplane carrying President Juv&eacute;nal Habyarimana and the president of Burundi was shot down, killing both. Almost immediately, the military began to round up and execute Tutsis and political moderates. The genocide spread to all areas of the country, claiming about 800,000 lives in just six weeks, most of whom were Tutsis, and leaving three million Rwandans displaced before the fighting stopped. The international community launched one of the largest humanitarian efforts ever mounted, and in 2001, the government began implementation of a grassroots village-level justice system, known as <i>gacaca</i>, to address war crimes during the genocide. Although Rwanda has made significant progress towards a democratic system, the legacy of the 1994 genocide remains. Recently, a United Nations (UN) tribunal accused a high-ranking official of helping cover up the assassination of Rwanda&rsquo;s and Burundi&rsquo;s presidents, among other officials, and a Rwandan solider involved with the UN peacekeeping mission has been accused of war crimes by a Spanish judge. In addition, Paul Rusesabagina, the hero of the film <i>Hotel Rwanda</i>, who helped to save more than 1,200 lives during the genocide, has come under fire in his native country for attempting to use the country&rsquo;s history for his own gain. He warned that another genocide, of Tutsis against Hutus, could occur, and claimed that war crimes committed by Tutsis have been overlooked by biased courts.</div>
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Basic Information
<p><b>Lay of the Land</b>: <span>In east Central Africa, perched on an isolated hilly plateau scattered with eucalyptus </span>trees and banana groves, is Rwanda, called &ldquo;the land of a thousand hills.&rdquo;&nbsp;Lake Kivu and the Virunga Mountains, capped by 14,787-foot Mount Karisimbi, form a natural barrier to the west and northwest. The Kagera River, the source of the Nile River, is to the east, and the Ankanyaru and Ruzizi rivers are to the south and southeast.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Population</b>: 10.2 million</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><b>Religions</b>: Catholic 56.5%, Protestant 26%, Seventh-Day Adventist 11.1%, Muslim 4.6%, Baha&rsquo;i 0.2%, non-religious 1.6%</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><b>Ethnic Groups</b>: Hutu (Bantu) 84%, Tutsi (Hamitic) 15%, Twa (Pygmy) 1%</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><b>Languages</b>: Rwanda (or Kinyarwanda), French, English , Kiswahili</div>
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History
<p>Rwanda&rsquo;s earliest history maintains that Tutsi cattle breeders came from the Horn of Africa in the 15th century. Soon after, they began to subjugate the Hutu natives by way of a feudal society headed by Tutsis, and established a monarchy under a <i>mwami </i>(king).&nbsp;</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Hutu communities continued to exist in other areas, living in cooperation with the Tutsi king, albeit as second status citizens. Under feudalization, through a contract known as <i><span>ubuhake</span></i>, Hutu farmers promised their services and those of their descendants to the Tutsi lord in return for the loan of cattle and use of grazing pastures along with other land. Over time, the Hutus were reduced to virtual serfdom, enjoying fewer rights than the Tutsis, but existing alongside them.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Most of Rwanda fell under German influence under a conference in 1890, while the remainder of the country became Belgium&rsquo;s territory.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The first European known to have visited Rwanda was German Count Gustaf Adolf von G&ouml;tzen in 1894. Missionaries such as the &ldquo;White Fathers&rdquo; followed, and in 1899, the<i> mwami</i> allowed Rwanda to become a German protectorate with no resistance. In 1915, Belgian troops from Zaire (Congo) chased the Germans out of Rwanda, and took control of the country.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Belgium retained possession of Rwanda, along with Burundi, after World War I with the mandate of the League of Nations. At this time, it became the territory of Ruanda-Urundi, and after World War II, Ruanda-Urundi became a UN Trust Territory under Belgian authority.&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>During the 1940s, King Rudahigwa redistributed cattle and land. Most of the land remained under the Tutsis; however, the Hutus began feeling liberalized. This began a period of ethnic tension between the Hutus and Tustis.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Throughout the 1950s, Belgium instituted many reforms aimed at encouraging democracy and promoting a profit economy. However, Tutsi nationalists resisted this notion and collectively formed the militarily-supported party, UNAR. &nbsp;Meanwhile, the Hutus began an emancipation movement led by Gr&eacute;goire Kayibanda, which was also militarized.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In November 1959, the attempted to murder Kayibanda in an effort to keep power. The Tutsis became involved in the &ldquo;wind of destruction&rdquo; in which 20,000 to 100,000 Tutsis were killed and many more fled to neighboring countries such as Uganda.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The Belgian military quelled the violence and were accused of working with with the Hutus. The Tutsi monarchy was overthrown, and two years later, the Party of the Hutu Emancipation Movement (PARMEHUTU) won an overwhelming victory in a UN-supervised referendum.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>After the Hutu takeover of the Rwandan government, more than 160,000 Tutsis fled to neighboring countries. The PARMEHUTU government, formed in 1961, was given authority by Belgium to run the country in January 1962. Later in June, the UN General Assembly terminated the Belgian trusteeship and granted Rwanda and Burundi full independence.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Kayibanda, the leader of the PARMEHUTU Party, became Rwanda&rsquo;s first elected president. Although the stated goals of the new regime were social and economic parity, Kayibanda was soon promoting an ideology that espoused Hutu supremacy.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>During the first ten years of the Kayibanda regime, Rwanda established relations with 43 countries, including the United States. By the mid-1960s, government corruption was becoming problematic, and on July 5, 1973, the military took over the country, led by Major General Juv&eacute;nal Habyarimana. The National Assembly was dissolved, as was the PARMEHUTU Party, and all political activity was abolished.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 1975, Major General Habyarimana formed the National Revolutionary Movement for Development (MRND). In December 1978, Rwandans adopted a new constitution and voted to confirm Major General Habyarimana as president. Habyarimana was re-elected in 1983 and again in 1988.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In July 1990, President Habyarimana declared that he would transform the country&rsquo;s one-party system into a multi-party democracy. However, on October 1, 1990, Rwandan exiles banded together as the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) and invaded Rwanda from their base in Uganda. The force was mostly made up of Tutsis who blamed the government for failing to resolve the problem of displaced Tutsi refugees in neighboring countries.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The civil war continued for two years until a cease-fire was signed on July 12, 1992. The agreement fixed a timetable to end the fighting and a cease-fire took effect July 31, 1992 after which political talks began on August 10, 1992.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In October 1993, the UN sent the UN Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR); however, it was ineffective because it lacked troops and funds.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>On April 6, 1994, the airplane carrying President Habyarimana and the president of Burundi was shot down as it prepared to land at Kigali. Both Hutu presidents were killed, and following almost immediately after, military groups began to round up and kill Tutsis and political moderates. Rwandan Prime Minister Agathe Uwilingiyimana and her Belgian bodyguards were among the first victims, and the killing quickly spread to all areas of the country.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Between April 6th and early July, genocide spread quickly; 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus were murdered at the hands of the militia, known as Interahamwe. Local officials and government-sponsored radio stations called on ordinary citizens to kill their neighbors.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In Kigali, the mostly Tutsi RPF battalion came under immediate attack, but soon fought its way out to join RPF units in the northern area of the country near Uganda. From there, the RPF invaded Rwanda again, and civil war raged for two months. In June 1994, French troops landed in Goma, Zaire, and were deployed throughout southwest Rwanda to reinforce the RPF. The RPF quickly defeated the Rwandan Army, which fled across the border to Zaire, followed by almost two million refugees.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>On July 4, 1994, the RPF took control of Kigali, and the war ended on July 16, 1994. In the aftermath of the war, one million Rwandans had been murdered, two million or so had fled, and another million were displaced all throughout the country. The international community responded with one of the largest humanitarian efforts ever mounted, and UNAMIR, which was drawn down during the fighting, was brought back up to strength after the RPF victory. UNAMIR remained in Rwanda until March 8, 1996.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In October 1996, Tutsis in eastern Zaire rose up again, sending more than 600,000 refugees back into Rwanda during the last two weeks of November. By the end of December, another 500,000 refugees returned from Tanzania. Today, fewer than 100,000 Rwandans are estimated to be living outside the country.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2001, the government began implementing a grassroots village-level justice system, known as <i>gacaca</i>, in order to address the enormous backlog of cases. Despite periodic prison releases, including the most recent January 2006 release of approximately 7,000 prisoners, tens of thousands of individuals still remain in the prison system. By the end of 2006, 818,000 genocide suspects had been identified by the <i>gacaca</i> courts, and total cases numbered more than one million. &nbsp;In February 2007, about 8,000 genocide-related prisoners were released.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In November 2007, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) signed a peace agreement in which the DRC agreed to turn over those involved in the 1994 genocide to Rwanda and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>About a year later, Rwanda accused France of actively having contributed to the genocide by providing names of more than 30 officials. France denies these accusations.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2009, Rwanda was admitted into the <a href="http://www.thecommonwealth.org/">Commonwealth of Nations</a> and restored diplomatic ties with France.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The current president, Paul Kagame, leads the RPF and won the 2010 elections with a 93% vote. He has been in power since 2000. Kagame&rsquo;s leadership has led some to label Rwanda Africa&rsquo;s &ldquo;biggest success story&rdquo; and has brought him international prestige. However, he is also accused of political corruption and the US government states that he has a &ldquo;mediocre&rdquo; human rights record.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.historyplace.com/worldhistory/genocide/rwanda.htm">Genocide in the 20th Century</a> (The History Place)<a href="http://www.historyworld.net/wrldhis/PlainTextHistories.asp?historyid=ad24">History of Rwanda</a> (History World)</div> <div><a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Rwanda">History of Rwanda</a> (Wikipedia)</div> <div><a href="http://www.rwanda-genocide.org/">Rwanda: The Wake of a Genocide</a></div> <div><a href="http://topics.nytimes.com/topics/news/international/countriesandterritories/rwanda/genocide/index.html">Rwandan Genocide</a> (New York Times)</div> <div>&nbsp;</div>
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Rwanda's Newspapers
<p><a href="http://rwandastar.com/">Rwandastar</a> (English)</p> <div><a href="http://www.newtimes.co.rw/">The New Times &ndash; Rwanda&rsquo;s First Daily</a> (English)</div>
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History of U.S. Relations with Rwanda
<p>Diplomatic relations between the United States and Rwanda were established on July 1, 1962.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>After 1994, relations between the two countries were focused around the humanitarian needs of Rwanda after the genocide.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The U.S. Agency for International Development&rsquo;s (USAID) programs have focused on health issues, including the prevention, treatment, and care of HIV/AIDS, reduction of mortality and morbidity due to malaria, increased voluntary family planning methods, and improved maternal and child health. There have also been programs that focused on economic and political issues, including the promotion of rural economic growth through specialty coffee, dairy, and eco-tourism, encouragement of participatory governance and decentralization in 12 target districts, promotion of a democratic Rwanda where the government respects human rights, civil liberties, and the rule of law, and providing of food aid to the most vulnerable populations.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Although the US was aware of the genocide, President Bill Clinton decided not to intervene. As a result, the US did not provide any troops and instead pushed for removing UNAMIR forces in April 1994. The US also provided military training to a Tutsi co-founder, Paul Kagame. In 1998, Bill Clinton flew to Kigali and apologized to all Rwandans for not attempting to prevent the genocide. Clinton regretted that the mass murders occurred &ldquo;five times as fast as the mechanized gas chambers used by the Nazis.&rdquo;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Annual U.S. exports to Rwanda averaged under $10 million from 1990 to 1993, and exceeded $40 million in 1994 and 1995.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rwanda%E2%80%93United_States_relations">Rwanda&ndash;United States Relations</a> (Wikipedia)</div>
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Current U.S. Relations with Rwanda
<p>Relations between the United States and Rwanda are cooperative, and the U.S. is supportive of Rwanda&rsquo;s implementation of democratic institutions in the wake of its bloody civil war.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Currently, the largest U.S. government programs in Rwanda are the President&rsquo;s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the President&rsquo;s Malaria Initiative, both of which aim to reduce the impact of these diseases. Other activities promote rural economic growth and support good governance and decentralization. Overall, U.S. foreign assistance to Rwanda has increased four-fold over the past four years.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) approved a Threshold Country Plan that was submitted by the government of Rwanda in November of 2007. The plan will be implemented by USAID, and will focus on strengthening justice and civil rights in Rwanda.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The State Department&rsquo;s Public Affairs section maintains a cultural center in Kigali, which offers public access to English-language publications and information on the United States.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2006, 1,218 Rwandans visited the U.S., an increase of 7.6% compared to the 1,132 that came in 2005.&nbsp;More Rwandans have visited the U.S. every year since 2002, when 657 traveled to America.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In February 2008, the US and Rwanda signed a Bilateral Investment Treaty which promotes free trade and open investment. This was the first such treaty between the US and a Sub-Saharan African country in more than a decade.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.usaid.gov/press/releases/2008/pr080317_1.html">USAID Announces New Mission Director to Rwanda</a> (USAID)</div> <div><a href="http://www.mcc.gov/press/releases/documents/release-101508-rwanda.php">$24.7 Million MCC Threshold Program with Rwanda Signed</a> (Millennium Challenge Corporation)</div>
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Where Does the Money Flow
<p>About $34.15 million was exported from the US to Rwanda in 2009, while $19.16 million was imported to the US from Rwanda.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2009, top exports from the US to Rwanda included pharmaceutical preparations ($14.9 million), telecommunications equipment ($3.1 million), computers, ($2.15 million), and civilian aircraft, engines, equipment, and parts ($1.4 million).</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2009, the largest imports to the US from Rwanda included green coffee ($13.1 million) and unmanufactured steelmaking and ferroalloying materials ($3.5 million). These imports are followed by tobacco, waxes and nonfood oils ($875 thousand) and furniture, household items, and baskets ($483 thousand).</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div>American companies invested in Rwanda include the tea industry, franchising (FedEx, Coca-Cola, Western Union, and Moneygram), and a few service and manufacturing concerns. Since the civil war, however, foreign investment has been limited.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The 2011 FY foreign aid budget request is about $240 million.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The largest portion of the budget, $183.1 million, will focus on investing in health and education. Through the Development Assistance program, basic education, water supply, and sanitation are main priorities. Basic education will include education through information and communications technologies, as well as improving access to educational materials. USAID will support maternal and child health, family planning, and reproductive health through the Global Health Child Survival program. Under this program, USAID also hopes to combat malaria.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Next, about $50.4 million will be directed towards economic growth. The US will provide assistance in agriculture and spur economic growth through tourism. Under the Global Hunger and Food Security Initiative, USAID will help Rwanda design a food security strategy. USAID will also fight malnutrition by working with various companies and organizations.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>About $5.85 million will fund efforts relating to democracy and governance. The US hopes to develop democracy and also build capacity of civil society through improving rule of law and human rights. Many of the programs will be associated with the Millennium Challenge Corporation.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/imports/c7690.html">Imports from Rwanda</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/exports/c7690.html">Exports to Rwanda</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/137937.pdf">Congressional Budget for Foreign Operations</a> (pages 141-145)</div> <div><a href="http://www.usaid.gov/locations/sub-saharan_africa/countries/rwanda/index.html">Rwanda</a> (USAID)</div> <div><a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/balance/c7690.html">Trade in Goods (Imports, Exports and Trade Balance) with Rwanda</a> (U.S. Census Bureau)</div>
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Controversies
<p><b>Rwandan Peacekeeping Official on War Crimes Controversy </b></p> <div>In July 2008, Voice of America reported that the United States would side with Rwanda in an international controversy involving a Rwandan commander in the UN-backed force in Darfur who was accused of war crimes during Rwanda&rsquo;s 1994 civil war. The State Department said that it reviewed the officer&rsquo;s records and saw no reason to exclude him from the peacekeeping mission. Rwanda has said that it will leave the peacekeeping force if the Rwandan general is removed and has to face war crimes charges. A Spanish judge indicted Major General Emmanuel Karake Karenzi and 39 other officers for allegedly engaging in reprisal killings. The U.S. has said that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice made the final decision to retain Karenzi. The General was suspended in early 2010 on charges of immoral conduct and has been interrogated.</div> <div><a href="http://www.voanews.com/english/archive/2008-07/2008-07-24-voa62.cfm?CFID=97623585&amp;CFTOKEN=10346136&amp;jsessionid=843065cab5beed48d1062d7948763e22652b">US Backs Rwanda in Dispute Over Darfur Commander</a> (by David Gollust, Voice of America)</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><b>Hotel Rwanda Hero in Genocide Controversy </b></div> <div>In April 2007, Reuters reported that <span>Paul Rusesabagina, who came to national attention as the hero of the film Hotel Rwanda, came under fire in his native country. Rusesabagina helped save 1,268 people during the Rwandan genocide of 1994, but when the 13th anniversary of the genocide came around, Rwandan President Paul Kagame accused Rusesabagina of using Rwanda&rsquo;s bloody history for his own personal gain. Rusesabagina has also raised local controversy by warning that another genocide, of Tutsis against Hutus, could occur, and by claiming that war crimes committed by Tutsis in 1994 have been overlooked by biased courts. Others have accused him of taking money from the </span><a href="http://hrrfoundation.org/">Hotel Rwanda Rusesabagina Foundation</a> charity. Rusesabagina lives in Belgium, saying he is not safe in Rwanda. He currently heads the <a href="http://hrrfoundation.org/">Rusesabagina Foundation</a>, which works to prevent future genocides and raise awareness for a reconciliation process in both Rwanda and the Greater Lakes Region in Africa.</div> <div>&ldquo;<a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUSL0420968620070404">Hotel Rwanda&rdquo; Hero in Bitter Controversy</a> (by Arthur Asiimwe, Reuters)</div>
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Human Rights
<p>According to the State Department, &ldquo;Citizens&rsquo; right to change their government was effectively restricted and violence against genocide survivors and witnesses by unknown assailants resulted in deaths.&rdquo;</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Role of the Police and Security Apparatus</b></div> <div>.An ineffective police force is marked by a lack of basic resources and reports of corruption and arbitrary arrest. Reports of torture and abuse by the LDF continued; however, complaints of injuries arising from mob violence were not reported.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Arrest and Detention</b></div> <div>Suspects may be detained for up to 72 hours without a warrant, and prosecutors have ten days to bring formal charges. However, these regulations were not always enforced. At times, police gave punishments that did not match the crime. As a result, victims agreed to the recommended penalty, such as week-long detention or restitution, for a minor crime.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The government enforces vague laws against vagrancy and illegal street vending. Police and the LDF often detained and charged street children, vendors, beggars, and undocumented nonresidents in Kigali, Butare, and other larger towns in violation of those laws.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Lengthy pretrial detention is a serious problem and result of genocide suspects dating from 1994. However, the government has significantly reduced backlogging. &nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Prison and Detention Center Conditions</b></div> <div>Conditions remain harsh. Prisons are overcrowded with 59,000 prisoners in 14 centers. However, the government is reported to be attempting to deal with the situation. In July 2009, a senate committee meeting ended in a decision to close the Gikondo transit center.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The government was unable to provide adequate medical treatment in prisons. In 2006, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) halted food assistance to the 16 main prisons. However, the government continues to increase its food budget. At the close of 2009, human rights groups found no signs of nutritional deficiencies. The government did not provide food to prisoners in smaller jails or police stations.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Although national prison policy disallows prisoners to work at private residences and businesses, many times community service was included in a prison sentence for genocide-related crimes.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Freedom of Speech and Press</b></div> <div>The constitution supports freedom of speech and press, but only in the conditions outlined by the law. The government at times restricted these rights by enforcing overly broad and vaguely defined laws, resulting in decreased press freedom during the year. While the press regularly published articles that were critical of senior government officials and government policy, there were increased instances in which the government harassed, convicted, fined, and intimidated independent journalists who expressed views that were deemed critical of the government on sensitive topics, or who were believed to have violated law or journalistic standards monitored by a semi-independent media regulatory council. Numerous journalists practiced self-censorship.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Freedom of Religion</b></div> <div>The constitution provides for freedom of religion, and the government generally respected this right in practice. There were some exceptions, however, as in the cases of local government officials detaining members of Jehovah&rsquo;s Witnesses for refusing to participate in security patrols. Additionally, 112 children of Jehovah&rsquo;s Witnesses were expelled in 2008 for not singing the national anthem, although 97 returned in September.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Official Corruption and Government Transparency</b></div> <div>Rwandan law penalizes official corruption and enforcement of the law is improving. About 404 cases of corruption and embezzlement were investigated in 2009. Agencies that work to prevent corruption include the Office of the Auditor General which investigates government ministries. The composition of a new anticorruption council was announced in January 2009 consisting of several ministries.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Women</b></div> <div>Although rape and spousal rape are illegal, they are still rampant in the country. There were 2,356 rape investigations, 3,152 rape trials, and 1,487 new rape cases filed in court in 2009.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The law does not specifically prohibit domestic violence, so domestic violence against women, including wife beating, was common. The National Institute of Statistics suggests that 31 percent of women over 15 years of age have been subjected to domestic violence.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Prostitution is illegal, but trafficking in women for sexual exploitation remained a problem.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Women continued to face societal discrimination. Women traditionally performed most of the subsistence farming. Nevertheless, women continued to have limited opportunities for education, employment, and promotion. Also, it was much more difficult for women than for men to successfully pursue property claims.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Homosexuality</b></div> <div>Discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and those living with HIV/AIDS often occurs. In September 2007, a few members of parliament worked to criminalize homosexuality. There were reports that police officers assaulted and arrested homosexuals. There were also reports of landlords evicting tenants based on sexual orientation. Members of the military with HIV/AIDS are allowed to serve domestically but cannot take part in peacekeeping missions abroad.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Right of Association</b></div> <div>The law provides some workers with the right to strike, but in practice this right was severely restricted. Participation in unauthorized demonstrations could result in employee dismissal, nonpayment of wages, and civil action against the union. The law does not allow civil servants to strike.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Children</b></div> <div>While the law does not specifically prohibit forced or compulsory labor by children, there are laws to protect children from exploitation in the workplace. However, the government did not effectively enforce them, and child labor, including forced prostitution, was prevalent. Due to the genocide and deaths from HIV/AIDS, there were numerous households headed by children, some of whom resorted to prostitution to survive.</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2009/af/135971.htm">U.S. State Department</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.hrw.org/en/africa/rwanda">Human Rights Watch</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.amnesty.org/en/region/africa/central-africa/rwanda">Amnesty International</a></div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div>
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Debate
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Past Ambassadors
<p>Note: The Embassy in Kigali was established on July 1, 1962, with David J.S. Manbey as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires ad interim.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Charles D. Withers</div> <div>Appointment: Mar 9, 1963</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Apr 19, 1963</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 15, 1966</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Leo G. Cyr</div> <div>Appointment: Sep 19, 1966</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Nov 4, 1966</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 29, 1971</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Robert Foster Corrigan</div> <div>Appointment: Dec 9, 1971</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Mar 24, 1972</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 3, 1973</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Robert E. Fritts</div> <div>Appointment: Feb 28, 1974</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Apr 18, 1974</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 18, 1976</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>T. Frank Crigler</div> <div>Appointment: Sep 16, 1976</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Oct 29, 1976</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post May 12, 1979</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Harry R. Melone, Jr.</div> <div>Appointment: Nov 6, 1979</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Dec 28, 1979</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 17, 1982</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>John Blane</div> <div>Appointment: Sep 30, 1982</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Nov 9, 1982</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 16, 1985</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>John Edwin Upston</div> <div>Appointment: Dec 17, 1985</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Feb 13, 1986</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 14, 1987</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Leonard H.O. Spearman</div> <div>Appointment: Feb 5, 1988</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Apr 27, 1988</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 10, 1990</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Robert A. Flaten</div> <div>Appointment: Oct 30, 1990</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Dec 17, 1990</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 23, 1993</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>David P. Rawson</div> <div>Appointment: Nov 22, 1993</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Jan 8, 1994</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jan 6, 1996</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Robert E. Gribbin, 3rd</div> <div>Appointment: Dec 19, 1995</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Jan 10, 1996</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jan 5, 1999</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>George McDade Staples</div> <div>Appointment: Oct 26, 1998</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Jan 27, 1999</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 22, 2001</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Margaret K. McMillion</div> <div>Appointment: Nov 5, 2001</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Dec 13, 2001</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 10, 2004</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Michael R. Arietti</div> <div>Appointment: Nov 2, 2005</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Dec 5, 2005</div> <div>Termination of Mission: 2008</div>
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Rwanda's Ambassador to the U.S.
ambassador-image Kimonyo, James

James Kimonyo became ambassador of Rwanda to the United States on May 18, 2007. He also serves as the non-resident ambassador to Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and Chile. Kimonyo led the Social Democratic Party (SDP) as a senior member. However, in Septemmber 2010, he switched to the ruling Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF because it has “superior programs” and “mature politics.” He also stated, “I came to realize that the RPF is difficult to defeat and it has the support of the majority of the population.”

 
Kimonyo has a Bachelor of Science in civil engineering and holds a masters degree in engineering project management.
 
Prior to his diplomatic career, Kimonyo served as the governor of the southeastern province of Kibungo from January 2002 until 2004 and the southern province of Butare for six months in 2004.
 
After the 1994 genocide, he was appointed to head the Department of Rehabilitation and Reconstruction under several ministries including Rehabilitation and Social Integration, Home Affairs, Communal Development and Resettlement. He was later director of resettlement in the Ministry of Lands, Resettlement and Environmental Protection.
 
In December 2004, Kimonyo took over as Rwanda’s Ambassador to the South Africa and non-resident ambassador to Zambia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Angola, Namibia, Botswana, Swaziland and Lesotho, a position he held for two years.
 
Kimonyo has also served as a national director and coordinator of several projects funded
by different international organizations including UNHCR, UNDP and UN-HABITAT.
 
James Kimonyo(USAID) (pdf)

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Rwanda's Embassy Web Site in the U.S.
<p><a href="http://www.rwandaembassy.org/index.php">Rwanda&rsquo;s Embassy in the U.S</a>.</p>
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U.S. Ambassador to Rwanda

Koran, Donald
ambassador-image

A career member of the Senior Foreign Service, Donald W. Koran was nominated in April 2011 by President Barack Obama to serve as U.S. ambassador to Rwanda.

 
Koran received his Bachelor of Arts from the University of Texas at Austin and earned a Master of Arts and PhD in economics from The Johns Hopkins University.
 
Prior to joining the Foreign Service, Koran was a visiting professor at Tulane University. He also served in the 1980s as a staff economist for the Federal Trade Commission and director of research for the National Cable Television Association
 
Since joining the Foreign Service in 1984, Koran has held numerous assignments at the State Department, including division chief for Western and Southern Africa in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research, deputy chief of mission for Niger, and deputy chief of mission for Rwanda.   
 
Before receiving his appointment as ambassador to Rwanda, he was the director for the Office of Africa Analysis in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research at the State Department.  
 
Marketable Landing Rights and Economic Efficiency (by Donald W. Koran and Jonathan D. Ogur, Federal trade Commission) (pdf)
Airport Access Problems: Lessons Learned from Slot Regulation by the FAA (by Donald Koran and Jonathan D. Ogur, Federal trade Commission) (pdf)

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Previous U.S. Ambassador to Rwanda

Symington, W. Stuart
ambassador-image

Missouri native, W. Stuart Symington has served as the United States Ambassador to Rwanda since August 1, 2008.

 
Symington comes from a distinguished political family. His grandfather, also known as W. Stuart Symington, was the first US Secretary of the Air Force from 1947 to 1950. He later served as the US Senator from Missouri from 1953 to 1976. His father, James W. Symington, served in the House of Representatives from 1969 to 1977 for Missouri’s Second Congressional District. Fife Symington, his great uncle, became the Governor of Arizona in 1991 and ended his term in 1997.
 
Symington earned a bachelor’s degree from Brown University and a Juris Doctorate from Columbia University. He clerked for the chief judge of the Eastern District of Missouri, then litigated and practiced corporate law in New York, London, Paris, and St. Joseph, MO, before becoming a Foreign Service Officer in 1986.
 
After beginning his diplomatic career tracking protests and politics in Honduras, he moved to Spain and worked on economic issues before serving as the ambassador’s aide during Desert Shield and Storm. In Mexico, Symington cultivated the political opposition, worked on anti-drug issues, helped congressional visitors looking at NAFTA, and reported from Chiapas during the Zapatista revolt.
 
At the State Department, Symington worked for the Under Secretary for Political Affairs on Latin American and African issues, and served as his aide for Bosnia. During a yearlong Pearson Fellowship, he served on the staff of Congressman Ike Skelton, studying US military joint operations and education.
 
He later traveled to Sudan and North Korea on teams negotiating the freeing of American captives before finishing the year as an aide to Ambassador Bill Richardson, who was at the time the U.S. permanent representative to the UN. As a political officer in Ecuador, Symington joined efforts to end the century-old Peru/Ecuador border conflict, and helped negotiate the agreement establishing an anti-drug Forward Operating Location.
 
From 2001-2003, Symington served as Deputy Chief of Mission in Niger, dealing with military mutinies, terrorist threats, and civil unrest. He then returned to the State Department as the Deputy Director of West African Affairs in the Africa Bureau.
 
From October 2004 to February 2005, he worked for Ambassador Negroponte in Iraq on the election process and political issues, and has subsequently taught at National Defense University’s Joint Forces Staff College in Norfolk.
 
From 2006 to 2008, Symington served as ambassador to Djibouti. 
 

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News
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Overview
<p>Rwanda&rsquo;s history is one marred with perpetual civil war between the majority population of native Hutu people, who are peasant farmers, and the minority population of Tutsi, who arrived from the Horn of Africa in the 15th century. In 1894, the Germans and missionaries known as the &ldquo;White Fathers&rdquo; colonized Rwanda and made it a German protectorate. The Germans favored the Tutsi over the Hutu and put the Tutsis into power to operate as proxy rulers. The Tutsi ruling class established a monarchy and formed a feudal society, subjugating the Hutus into serfdom. In 1915, Belgian troops chased the Germans out of the country and took over, continuing Germany&rsquo;s support for the Tutsi faction until the Hutu Revolution of 1959. Violence broke out and many fled the country, but in 1962, Rwanda was granted full independence under a leader who advanced a Hutu-favoring agenda. However, widespread corruption resulted in a military takeover of the government in 1973, resulting in one-party state.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 1990, the Rwandan Patriotic Army, comprised of mostly Tutsi exiles, invaded the nation from their base in Uganda, beginning a two-year civil war. A cease-fire was signed, but lasted less than two years. On April 6, 1994, an airplane carrying President Juv&eacute;nal Habyarimana and the president of Burundi was shot down, killing both. Almost immediately, the military began to round up and execute Tutsis and political moderates. The genocide spread to all areas of the country, claiming about 800,000 lives in just six weeks, most of whom were Tutsis, and leaving three million Rwandans displaced before the fighting stopped. The international community launched one of the largest humanitarian efforts ever mounted, and in 2001, the government began implementation of a grassroots village-level justice system, known as <i>gacaca</i>, to address war crimes during the genocide. Although Rwanda has made significant progress towards a democratic system, the legacy of the 1994 genocide remains. Recently, a United Nations (UN) tribunal accused a high-ranking official of helping cover up the assassination of Rwanda&rsquo;s and Burundi&rsquo;s presidents, among other officials, and a Rwandan solider involved with the UN peacekeeping mission has been accused of war crimes by a Spanish judge. In addition, Paul Rusesabagina, the hero of the film <i>Hotel Rwanda</i>, who helped to save more than 1,200 lives during the genocide, has come under fire in his native country for attempting to use the country&rsquo;s history for his own gain. He warned that another genocide, of Tutsis against Hutus, could occur, and claimed that war crimes committed by Tutsis have been overlooked by biased courts.</div>
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Basic Information
<p><b>Lay of the Land</b>: <span>In east Central Africa, perched on an isolated hilly plateau scattered with eucalyptus </span>trees and banana groves, is Rwanda, called &ldquo;the land of a thousand hills.&rdquo;&nbsp;Lake Kivu and the Virunga Mountains, capped by 14,787-foot Mount Karisimbi, form a natural barrier to the west and northwest. The Kagera River, the source of the Nile River, is to the east, and the Ankanyaru and Ruzizi rivers are to the south and southeast.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Population</b>: 10.2 million</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><b>Religions</b>: Catholic 56.5%, Protestant 26%, Seventh-Day Adventist 11.1%, Muslim 4.6%, Baha&rsquo;i 0.2%, non-religious 1.6%</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><b>Ethnic Groups</b>: Hutu (Bantu) 84%, Tutsi (Hamitic) 15%, Twa (Pygmy) 1%</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><b>Languages</b>: Rwanda (or Kinyarwanda), French, English , Kiswahili</div>
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History
<p>Rwanda&rsquo;s earliest history maintains that Tutsi cattle breeders came from the Horn of Africa in the 15th century. Soon after, they began to subjugate the Hutu natives by way of a feudal society headed by Tutsis, and established a monarchy under a <i>mwami </i>(king).&nbsp;</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Hutu communities continued to exist in other areas, living in cooperation with the Tutsi king, albeit as second status citizens. Under feudalization, through a contract known as <i><span>ubuhake</span></i>, Hutu farmers promised their services and those of their descendants to the Tutsi lord in return for the loan of cattle and use of grazing pastures along with other land. Over time, the Hutus were reduced to virtual serfdom, enjoying fewer rights than the Tutsis, but existing alongside them.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Most of Rwanda fell under German influence under a conference in 1890, while the remainder of the country became Belgium&rsquo;s territory.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The first European known to have visited Rwanda was German Count Gustaf Adolf von G&ouml;tzen in 1894. Missionaries such as the &ldquo;White Fathers&rdquo; followed, and in 1899, the<i> mwami</i> allowed Rwanda to become a German protectorate with no resistance. In 1915, Belgian troops from Zaire (Congo) chased the Germans out of Rwanda, and took control of the country.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Belgium retained possession of Rwanda, along with Burundi, after World War I with the mandate of the League of Nations. At this time, it became the territory of Ruanda-Urundi, and after World War II, Ruanda-Urundi became a UN Trust Territory under Belgian authority.&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>During the 1940s, King Rudahigwa redistributed cattle and land. Most of the land remained under the Tutsis; however, the Hutus began feeling liberalized. This began a period of ethnic tension between the Hutus and Tustis.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Throughout the 1950s, Belgium instituted many reforms aimed at encouraging democracy and promoting a profit economy. However, Tutsi nationalists resisted this notion and collectively formed the militarily-supported party, UNAR. &nbsp;Meanwhile, the Hutus began an emancipation movement led by Gr&eacute;goire Kayibanda, which was also militarized.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In November 1959, the attempted to murder Kayibanda in an effort to keep power. The Tutsis became involved in the &ldquo;wind of destruction&rdquo; in which 20,000 to 100,000 Tutsis were killed and many more fled to neighboring countries such as Uganda.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The Belgian military quelled the violence and were accused of working with with the Hutus. The Tutsi monarchy was overthrown, and two years later, the Party of the Hutu Emancipation Movement (PARMEHUTU) won an overwhelming victory in a UN-supervised referendum.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>After the Hutu takeover of the Rwandan government, more than 160,000 Tutsis fled to neighboring countries. The PARMEHUTU government, formed in 1961, was given authority by Belgium to run the country in January 1962. Later in June, the UN General Assembly terminated the Belgian trusteeship and granted Rwanda and Burundi full independence.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Kayibanda, the leader of the PARMEHUTU Party, became Rwanda&rsquo;s first elected president. Although the stated goals of the new regime were social and economic parity, Kayibanda was soon promoting an ideology that espoused Hutu supremacy.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>During the first ten years of the Kayibanda regime, Rwanda established relations with 43 countries, including the United States. By the mid-1960s, government corruption was becoming problematic, and on July 5, 1973, the military took over the country, led by Major General Juv&eacute;nal Habyarimana. The National Assembly was dissolved, as was the PARMEHUTU Party, and all political activity was abolished.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 1975, Major General Habyarimana formed the National Revolutionary Movement for Development (MRND). In December 1978, Rwandans adopted a new constitution and voted to confirm Major General Habyarimana as president. Habyarimana was re-elected in 1983 and again in 1988.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In July 1990, President Habyarimana declared that he would transform the country&rsquo;s one-party system into a multi-party democracy. However, on October 1, 1990, Rwandan exiles banded together as the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF) and invaded Rwanda from their base in Uganda. The force was mostly made up of Tutsis who blamed the government for failing to resolve the problem of displaced Tutsi refugees in neighboring countries.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The civil war continued for two years until a cease-fire was signed on July 12, 1992. The agreement fixed a timetable to end the fighting and a cease-fire took effect July 31, 1992 after which political talks began on August 10, 1992.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In October 1993, the UN sent the UN Assistance Mission for Rwanda (UNAMIR); however, it was ineffective because it lacked troops and funds.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>On April 6, 1994, the airplane carrying President Habyarimana and the president of Burundi was shot down as it prepared to land at Kigali. Both Hutu presidents were killed, and following almost immediately after, military groups began to round up and kill Tutsis and political moderates. Rwandan Prime Minister Agathe Uwilingiyimana and her Belgian bodyguards were among the first victims, and the killing quickly spread to all areas of the country.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Between April 6th and early July, genocide spread quickly; 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus were murdered at the hands of the militia, known as Interahamwe. Local officials and government-sponsored radio stations called on ordinary citizens to kill their neighbors.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In Kigali, the mostly Tutsi RPF battalion came under immediate attack, but soon fought its way out to join RPF units in the northern area of the country near Uganda. From there, the RPF invaded Rwanda again, and civil war raged for two months. In June 1994, French troops landed in Goma, Zaire, and were deployed throughout southwest Rwanda to reinforce the RPF. The RPF quickly defeated the Rwandan Army, which fled across the border to Zaire, followed by almost two million refugees.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>On July 4, 1994, the RPF took control of Kigali, and the war ended on July 16, 1994. In the aftermath of the war, one million Rwandans had been murdered, two million or so had fled, and another million were displaced all throughout the country. The international community responded with one of the largest humanitarian efforts ever mounted, and UNAMIR, which was drawn down during the fighting, was brought back up to strength after the RPF victory. UNAMIR remained in Rwanda until March 8, 1996.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In October 1996, Tutsis in eastern Zaire rose up again, sending more than 600,000 refugees back into Rwanda during the last two weeks of November. By the end of December, another 500,000 refugees returned from Tanzania. Today, fewer than 100,000 Rwandans are estimated to be living outside the country.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2001, the government began implementing a grassroots village-level justice system, known as <i>gacaca</i>, in order to address the enormous backlog of cases. Despite periodic prison releases, including the most recent January 2006 release of approximately 7,000 prisoners, tens of thousands of individuals still remain in the prison system. By the end of 2006, 818,000 genocide suspects had been identified by the <i>gacaca</i> courts, and total cases numbered more than one million. &nbsp;In February 2007, about 8,000 genocide-related prisoners were released.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In November 2007, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) signed a peace agreement in which the DRC agreed to turn over those involved in the 1994 genocide to Rwanda and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>About a year later, Rwanda accused France of actively having contributed to the genocide by providing names of more than 30 officials. France denies these accusations.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2009, Rwanda was admitted into the <a href="http://www.thecommonwealth.org/">Commonwealth of Nations</a> and restored diplomatic ties with France.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The current president, Paul Kagame, leads the RPF and won the 2010 elections with a 93% vote. He has been in power since 2000. Kagame&rsquo;s leadership has led some to label Rwanda Africa&rsquo;s &ldquo;biggest success story&rdquo; and has brought him international prestige. However, he is also accused of political corruption and the US government states that he has a &ldquo;mediocre&rdquo; human rights record.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.historyplace.com/worldhistory/genocide/rwanda.htm">Genocide in the 20th Century</a> (The History Place)<a href="http://www.historyworld.net/wrldhis/PlainTextHistories.asp?historyid=ad24">History of Rwanda</a> (History World)</div> <div><a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Rwanda">History of Rwanda</a> (Wikipedia)</div> <div><a href="http://www.rwanda-genocide.org/">Rwanda: The Wake of a Genocide</a></div> <div><a href="http://topics.nytimes.com/topics/news/international/countriesandterritories/rwanda/genocide/index.html">Rwandan Genocide</a> (New York Times)</div> <div>&nbsp;</div>
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Rwanda's Newspapers
<p><a href="http://rwandastar.com/">Rwandastar</a> (English)</p> <div><a href="http://www.newtimes.co.rw/">The New Times &ndash; Rwanda&rsquo;s First Daily</a> (English)</div>
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History of U.S. Relations with Rwanda
<p>Diplomatic relations between the United States and Rwanda were established on July 1, 1962.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>After 1994, relations between the two countries were focused around the humanitarian needs of Rwanda after the genocide.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The U.S. Agency for International Development&rsquo;s (USAID) programs have focused on health issues, including the prevention, treatment, and care of HIV/AIDS, reduction of mortality and morbidity due to malaria, increased voluntary family planning methods, and improved maternal and child health. There have also been programs that focused on economic and political issues, including the promotion of rural economic growth through specialty coffee, dairy, and eco-tourism, encouragement of participatory governance and decentralization in 12 target districts, promotion of a democratic Rwanda where the government respects human rights, civil liberties, and the rule of law, and providing of food aid to the most vulnerable populations.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Although the US was aware of the genocide, President Bill Clinton decided not to intervene. As a result, the US did not provide any troops and instead pushed for removing UNAMIR forces in April 1994. The US also provided military training to a Tutsi co-founder, Paul Kagame. In 1998, Bill Clinton flew to Kigali and apologized to all Rwandans for not attempting to prevent the genocide. Clinton regretted that the mass murders occurred &ldquo;five times as fast as the mechanized gas chambers used by the Nazis.&rdquo;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Annual U.S. exports to Rwanda averaged under $10 million from 1990 to 1993, and exceeded $40 million in 1994 and 1995.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rwanda%E2%80%93United_States_relations">Rwanda&ndash;United States Relations</a> (Wikipedia)</div>
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Current U.S. Relations with Rwanda
<p>Relations between the United States and Rwanda are cooperative, and the U.S. is supportive of Rwanda&rsquo;s implementation of democratic institutions in the wake of its bloody civil war.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Currently, the largest U.S. government programs in Rwanda are the President&rsquo;s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the President&rsquo;s Malaria Initiative, both of which aim to reduce the impact of these diseases. Other activities promote rural economic growth and support good governance and decentralization. Overall, U.S. foreign assistance to Rwanda has increased four-fold over the past four years.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) approved a Threshold Country Plan that was submitted by the government of Rwanda in November of 2007. The plan will be implemented by USAID, and will focus on strengthening justice and civil rights in Rwanda.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The State Department&rsquo;s Public Affairs section maintains a cultural center in Kigali, which offers public access to English-language publications and information on the United States.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2006, 1,218 Rwandans visited the U.S., an increase of 7.6% compared to the 1,132 that came in 2005.&nbsp;More Rwandans have visited the U.S. every year since 2002, when 657 traveled to America.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In February 2008, the US and Rwanda signed a Bilateral Investment Treaty which promotes free trade and open investment. This was the first such treaty between the US and a Sub-Saharan African country in more than a decade.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.usaid.gov/press/releases/2008/pr080317_1.html">USAID Announces New Mission Director to Rwanda</a> (USAID)</div> <div><a href="http://www.mcc.gov/press/releases/documents/release-101508-rwanda.php">$24.7 Million MCC Threshold Program with Rwanda Signed</a> (Millennium Challenge Corporation)</div>
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Where Does the Money Flow
<p>About $34.15 million was exported from the US to Rwanda in 2009, while $19.16 million was imported to the US from Rwanda.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2009, top exports from the US to Rwanda included pharmaceutical preparations ($14.9 million), telecommunications equipment ($3.1 million), computers, ($2.15 million), and civilian aircraft, engines, equipment, and parts ($1.4 million).</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>In 2009, the largest imports to the US from Rwanda included green coffee ($13.1 million) and unmanufactured steelmaking and ferroalloying materials ($3.5 million). These imports are followed by tobacco, waxes and nonfood oils ($875 thousand) and furniture, household items, and baskets ($483 thousand).</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div>American companies invested in Rwanda include the tea industry, franchising (FedEx, Coca-Cola, Western Union, and Moneygram), and a few service and manufacturing concerns. Since the civil war, however, foreign investment has been limited.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The 2011 FY foreign aid budget request is about $240 million.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The largest portion of the budget, $183.1 million, will focus on investing in health and education. Through the Development Assistance program, basic education, water supply, and sanitation are main priorities. Basic education will include education through information and communications technologies, as well as improving access to educational materials. USAID will support maternal and child health, family planning, and reproductive health through the Global Health Child Survival program. Under this program, USAID also hopes to combat malaria.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Next, about $50.4 million will be directed towards economic growth. The US will provide assistance in agriculture and spur economic growth through tourism. Under the Global Hunger and Food Security Initiative, USAID will help Rwanda design a food security strategy. USAID will also fight malnutrition by working with various companies and organizations.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>About $5.85 million will fund efforts relating to democracy and governance. The US hopes to develop democracy and also build capacity of civil society through improving rule of law and human rights. Many of the programs will be associated with the Millennium Challenge Corporation.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/imports/c7690.html">Imports from Rwanda</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/statistics/product/enduse/exports/c7690.html">Exports to Rwanda</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/137937.pdf">Congressional Budget for Foreign Operations</a> (pages 141-145)</div> <div><a href="http://www.usaid.gov/locations/sub-saharan_africa/countries/rwanda/index.html">Rwanda</a> (USAID)</div> <div><a href="http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/balance/c7690.html">Trade in Goods (Imports, Exports and Trade Balance) with Rwanda</a> (U.S. Census Bureau)</div>
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Controversies
<p><b>Rwandan Peacekeeping Official on War Crimes Controversy </b></p> <div>In July 2008, Voice of America reported that the United States would side with Rwanda in an international controversy involving a Rwandan commander in the UN-backed force in Darfur who was accused of war crimes during Rwanda&rsquo;s 1994 civil war. The State Department said that it reviewed the officer&rsquo;s records and saw no reason to exclude him from the peacekeeping mission. Rwanda has said that it will leave the peacekeeping force if the Rwandan general is removed and has to face war crimes charges. A Spanish judge indicted Major General Emmanuel Karake Karenzi and 39 other officers for allegedly engaging in reprisal killings. The U.S. has said that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice made the final decision to retain Karenzi. The General was suspended in early 2010 on charges of immoral conduct and has been interrogated.</div> <div><a href="http://www.voanews.com/english/archive/2008-07/2008-07-24-voa62.cfm?CFID=97623585&amp;CFTOKEN=10346136&amp;jsessionid=843065cab5beed48d1062d7948763e22652b">US Backs Rwanda in Dispute Over Darfur Commander</a> (by David Gollust, Voice of America)</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><b>Hotel Rwanda Hero in Genocide Controversy </b></div> <div>In April 2007, Reuters reported that <span>Paul Rusesabagina, who came to national attention as the hero of the film Hotel Rwanda, came under fire in his native country. Rusesabagina helped save 1,268 people during the Rwandan genocide of 1994, but when the 13th anniversary of the genocide came around, Rwandan President Paul Kagame accused Rusesabagina of using Rwanda&rsquo;s bloody history for his own personal gain. Rusesabagina has also raised local controversy by warning that another genocide, of Tutsis against Hutus, could occur, and by claiming that war crimes committed by Tutsis in 1994 have been overlooked by biased courts. Others have accused him of taking money from the </span><a href="http://hrrfoundation.org/">Hotel Rwanda Rusesabagina Foundation</a> charity. Rusesabagina lives in Belgium, saying he is not safe in Rwanda. He currently heads the <a href="http://hrrfoundation.org/">Rusesabagina Foundation</a>, which works to prevent future genocides and raise awareness for a reconciliation process in both Rwanda and the Greater Lakes Region in Africa.</div> <div>&ldquo;<a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUSL0420968620070404">Hotel Rwanda&rdquo; Hero in Bitter Controversy</a> (by Arthur Asiimwe, Reuters)</div>
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Human Rights
<p>According to the State Department, &ldquo;Citizens&rsquo; right to change their government was effectively restricted and violence against genocide survivors and witnesses by unknown assailants resulted in deaths.&rdquo;</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Role of the Police and Security Apparatus</b></div> <div>.An ineffective police force is marked by a lack of basic resources and reports of corruption and arbitrary arrest. Reports of torture and abuse by the LDF continued; however, complaints of injuries arising from mob violence were not reported.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Arrest and Detention</b></div> <div>Suspects may be detained for up to 72 hours without a warrant, and prosecutors have ten days to bring formal charges. However, these regulations were not always enforced. At times, police gave punishments that did not match the crime. As a result, victims agreed to the recommended penalty, such as week-long detention or restitution, for a minor crime.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The government enforces vague laws against vagrancy and illegal street vending. Police and the LDF often detained and charged street children, vendors, beggars, and undocumented nonresidents in Kigali, Butare, and other larger towns in violation of those laws.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Lengthy pretrial detention is a serious problem and result of genocide suspects dating from 1994. However, the government has significantly reduced backlogging. &nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Prison and Detention Center Conditions</b></div> <div>Conditions remain harsh. Prisons are overcrowded with 59,000 prisoners in 14 centers. However, the government is reported to be attempting to deal with the situation. In July 2009, a senate committee meeting ended in a decision to close the Gikondo transit center.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The government was unable to provide adequate medical treatment in prisons. In 2006, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) halted food assistance to the 16 main prisons. However, the government continues to increase its food budget. At the close of 2009, human rights groups found no signs of nutritional deficiencies. The government did not provide food to prisoners in smaller jails or police stations.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Although national prison policy disallows prisoners to work at private residences and businesses, many times community service was included in a prison sentence for genocide-related crimes.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Freedom of Speech and Press</b></div> <div>The constitution supports freedom of speech and press, but only in the conditions outlined by the law. The government at times restricted these rights by enforcing overly broad and vaguely defined laws, resulting in decreased press freedom during the year. While the press regularly published articles that were critical of senior government officials and government policy, there were increased instances in which the government harassed, convicted, fined, and intimidated independent journalists who expressed views that were deemed critical of the government on sensitive topics, or who were believed to have violated law or journalistic standards monitored by a semi-independent media regulatory council. Numerous journalists practiced self-censorship.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Freedom of Religion</b></div> <div>The constitution provides for freedom of religion, and the government generally respected this right in practice. There were some exceptions, however, as in the cases of local government officials detaining members of Jehovah&rsquo;s Witnesses for refusing to participate in security patrols. Additionally, 112 children of Jehovah&rsquo;s Witnesses were expelled in 2008 for not singing the national anthem, although 97 returned in September.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Official Corruption and Government Transparency</b></div> <div>Rwandan law penalizes official corruption and enforcement of the law is improving. About 404 cases of corruption and embezzlement were investigated in 2009. Agencies that work to prevent corruption include the Office of the Auditor General which investigates government ministries. The composition of a new anticorruption council was announced in January 2009 consisting of several ministries.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Women</b></div> <div>Although rape and spousal rape are illegal, they are still rampant in the country. There were 2,356 rape investigations, 3,152 rape trials, and 1,487 new rape cases filed in court in 2009.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The law does not specifically prohibit domestic violence, so domestic violence against women, including wife beating, was common. The National Institute of Statistics suggests that 31 percent of women over 15 years of age have been subjected to domestic violence.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Prostitution is illegal, but trafficking in women for sexual exploitation remained a problem.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Women continued to face societal discrimination. Women traditionally performed most of the subsistence farming. Nevertheless, women continued to have limited opportunities for education, employment, and promotion. Also, it was much more difficult for women than for men to successfully pursue property claims.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Homosexuality</b></div> <div>Discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and those living with HIV/AIDS often occurs. In September 2007, a few members of parliament worked to criminalize homosexuality. There were reports that police officers assaulted and arrested homosexuals. There were also reports of landlords evicting tenants based on sexual orientation. Members of the military with HIV/AIDS are allowed to serve domestically but cannot take part in peacekeeping missions abroad.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Right of Association</b></div> <div>The law provides some workers with the right to strike, but in practice this right was severely restricted. Participation in unauthorized demonstrations could result in employee dismissal, nonpayment of wages, and civil action against the union. The law does not allow civil servants to strike.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div><b>Children</b></div> <div>While the law does not specifically prohibit forced or compulsory labor by children, there are laws to protect children from exploitation in the workplace. However, the government did not effectively enforce them, and child labor, including forced prostitution, was prevalent. Due to the genocide and deaths from HIV/AIDS, there were numerous households headed by children, some of whom resorted to prostitution to survive.</div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div> <div><a href="http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2009/af/135971.htm">U.S. State Department</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.hrw.org/en/africa/rwanda">Human Rights Watch</a></div> <div><a href="http://www.amnesty.org/en/region/africa/central-africa/rwanda">Amnesty International</a></div> <div><b>&nbsp;</b></div>
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Debate
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Past Ambassadors
<p>Note: The Embassy in Kigali was established on July 1, 1962, with David J.S. Manbey as Charg&eacute; d&rsquo;Affaires ad interim.</p> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Charles D. Withers</div> <div>Appointment: Mar 9, 1963</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Apr 19, 1963</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 15, 1966</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Leo G. Cyr</div> <div>Appointment: Sep 19, 1966</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Nov 4, 1966</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 29, 1971</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Robert Foster Corrigan</div> <div>Appointment: Dec 9, 1971</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Mar 24, 1972</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 3, 1973</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Robert E. Fritts</div> <div>Appointment: Feb 28, 1974</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Apr 18, 1974</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jun 18, 1976</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>T. Frank Crigler</div> <div>Appointment: Sep 16, 1976</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Oct 29, 1976</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post May 12, 1979</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Harry R. Melone, Jr.</div> <div>Appointment: Nov 6, 1979</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Dec 28, 1979</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Aug 17, 1982</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>John Blane</div> <div>Appointment: Sep 30, 1982</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Nov 9, 1982</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 16, 1985</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>John Edwin Upston</div> <div>Appointment: Dec 17, 1985</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Feb 13, 1986</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 14, 1987</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Leonard H.O. Spearman</div> <div>Appointment: Feb 5, 1988</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Apr 27, 1988</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 10, 1990</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Robert A. Flaten</div> <div>Appointment: Oct 30, 1990</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Dec 17, 1990</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Nov 23, 1993</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>David P. Rawson</div> <div>Appointment: Nov 22, 1993</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Jan 8, 1994</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jan 6, 1996</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Robert E. Gribbin, 3rd</div> <div>Appointment: Dec 19, 1995</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Jan 10, 1996</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jan 5, 1999</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>George McDade Staples</div> <div>Appointment: Oct 26, 1998</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Jan 27, 1999</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Sep 22, 2001</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Margaret K. McMillion</div> <div>Appointment: Nov 5, 2001</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Dec 13, 2001</div> <div>Termination of Mission: Left post Jul 10, 2004</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Michael R. Arietti</div> <div>Appointment: Nov 2, 2005</div> <div>Presentation of Credentials: Dec 5, 2005</div> <div>Termination of Mission: 2008</div>
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Rwanda's Ambassador to the U.S.
ambassador-image Kimonyo, James

James Kimonyo became ambassador of Rwanda to the United States on May 18, 2007. He also serves as the non-resident ambassador to Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and Chile. Kimonyo led the Social Democratic Party (SDP) as a senior member. However, in Septemmber 2010, he switched to the ruling Rwanda Patriotic Front (RPF because it has “superior programs” and “mature politics.” He also stated, “I came to realize that the RPF is difficult to defeat and it has the support of the majority of the population.”

 
Kimonyo has a Bachelor of Science in civil engineering and holds a masters degree in engineering project management.
 
Prior to his diplomatic career, Kimonyo served as the governor of the southeastern province of Kibungo from January 2002 until 2004 and the southern province of Butare for six months in 2004.
 
After the 1994 genocide, he was appointed to head the Department of Rehabilitation and Reconstruction under several ministries including Rehabilitation and Social Integration, Home Affairs, Communal Development and Resettlement. He was later director of resettlement in the Ministry of Lands, Resettlement and Environmental Protection.
 
In December 2004, Kimonyo took over as Rwanda’s Ambassador to the South Africa and non-resident ambassador to Zambia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Angola, Namibia, Botswana, Swaziland and Lesotho, a position he held for two years.
 
Kimonyo has also served as a national director and coordinator of several projects funded
by different international organizations including UNHCR, UNDP and UN-HABITAT.
 
James Kimonyo(USAID) (pdf)

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Rwanda's Embassy Web Site in the U.S.
<p><a href="http://www.rwandaembassy.org/index.php">Rwanda&rsquo;s Embassy in the U.S</a>.</p>
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U.S. Ambassador to Rwanda

Koran, Donald
ambassador-image

A career member of the Senior Foreign Service, Donald W. Koran was nominated in April 2011 by President Barack Obama to serve as U.S. ambassador to Rwanda.

 
Koran received his Bachelor of Arts from the University of Texas at Austin and earned a Master of Arts and PhD in economics from The Johns Hopkins University.
 
Prior to joining the Foreign Service, Koran was a visiting professor at Tulane University. He also served in the 1980s as a staff economist for the Federal Trade Commission and director of research for the National Cable Television Association
 
Since joining the Foreign Service in 1984, Koran has held numerous assignments at the State Department, including division chief for Western and Southern Africa in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research, deputy chief of mission for Niger, and deputy chief of mission for Rwanda.   
 
Before receiving his appointment as ambassador to Rwanda, he was the director for the Office of Africa Analysis in the Bureau of Intelligence and Research at the State Department.  
 
Marketable Landing Rights and Economic Efficiency (by Donald W. Koran and Jonathan D. Ogur, Federal trade Commission) (pdf)
Airport Access Problems: Lessons Learned from Slot Regulation by the FAA (by Donald Koran and Jonathan D. Ogur, Federal trade Commission) (pdf)

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Previous U.S. Ambassador to Rwanda

Symington, W. Stuart
ambassador-image

Missouri native, W. Stuart Symington has served as the United States Ambassador to Rwanda since August 1, 2008.

 
Symington comes from a distinguished political family. His grandfather, also known as W. Stuart Symington, was the first US Secretary of the Air Force from 1947 to 1950. He later served as the US Senator from Missouri from 1953 to 1976. His father, James W. Symington, served in the House of Representatives from 1969 to 1977 for Missouri’s Second Congressional District. Fife Symington, his great uncle, became the Governor of Arizona in 1991 and ended his term in 1997.
 
Symington earned a bachelor’s degree from Brown University and a Juris Doctorate from Columbia University. He clerked for the chief judge of the Eastern District of Missouri, then litigated and practiced corporate law in New York, London, Paris, and St. Joseph, MO, before becoming a Foreign Service Officer in 1986.
 
After beginning his diplomatic career tracking protests and politics in Honduras, he moved to Spain and worked on economic issues before serving as the ambassador’s aide during Desert Shield and Storm. In Mexico, Symington cultivated the political opposition, worked on anti-drug issues, helped congressional visitors looking at NAFTA, and reported from Chiapas during the Zapatista revolt.
 
At the State Department, Symington worked for the Under Secretary for Political Affairs on Latin American and African issues, and served as his aide for Bosnia. During a yearlong Pearson Fellowship, he served on the staff of Congressman Ike Skelton, studying US military joint operations and education.
 
He later traveled to Sudan and North Korea on teams negotiating the freeing of American captives before finishing the year as an aide to Ambassador Bill Richardson, who was at the time the U.S. permanent representative to the UN. As a political officer in Ecuador, Symington joined efforts to end the century-old Peru/Ecuador border conflict, and helped negotiate the agreement establishing an anti-drug Forward Operating Location.
 
From 2001-2003, Symington served as Deputy Chief of Mission in Niger, dealing with military mutinies, terrorist threats, and civil unrest. He then returned to the State Department as the Deputy Director of West African Affairs in the Africa Bureau.
 
From October 2004 to February 2005, he worked for Ambassador Negroponte in Iraq on the election process and political issues, and has subsequently taught at National Defense University’s Joint Forces Staff College in Norfolk.
 
From 2006 to 2008, Symington served as ambassador to Djibouti. 
 

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