Yesterday, on the occasion of the Lecture Series of the Hague Academic Coalition, an afternoon lecture was held to address the recent developments in Rwanda concerning the judicial system and the Rule of Law, titled 'Rwanda and the Restoration of the Rule of Law'.
The lecture took place in the Historic Reading Room of the Peace Palace Library. Speakers were Mr. Steven van Hoogstraten, Director of the Carnegie Foundation, introducing H.E. Mrs. Immaculee Uwanyiligira, Ambassador of the Republic of Rwanda in The Hague, and Mr. Michael Johnson, Chairman of the Institute for Justice Sector Development.
The ambassador delivered an excellent and interesting lecture, overviewing the history of Rwanda, from pre-colonial times to the present, describing the difficulties in rebuilding the Rwandese society, particularly the legal system. To strive to reconciliation, trust, peace and security, law and order, combining traditional and common law, and restoring the rule of law are the main goals to be achieved by the Rwanda government. Especially the role of the Gacaca courts and the cooperation with the International Criminal tribunal for Rwanda were mentioned. The results are very promising and an example for neighboring countries.
Mr Johnson commented briefly on the role of donor organizations and the assistance from the international community. From the ruins of its past Rwanda has built a new society, restoring the rule of law.
The lecture was attended by a wide audience of international lawyers, students and others interested in the legal, political and democratic developments in Rwanda.
Speech by Mr. Steven van Hoogstraten, Director of the Carnegie Foundation
Speech by H.E. Mrs. Immaculee Uwanyiligira, Ambassador of the Republic of Rwanda in The Hague