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Rwandan Genocide Finds Release In Photos

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Rwandan Genocide Finds Release In Photos

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Rwandan Genocide Finds Release In Photos

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LIANE HANSEN, host:

Ethnic strife can touch off unimaginable horrors. Rwanda is proof of that. A wave of genocidal murder there in 1994 left more than a million people dead -800,000 of them were slaughtered in just 100 days.

The tragedy is documented in archives that are now open to the public and newly available online at the Genocide Archive Rwanda. Visitors to the sites can find photographs of victims, as well as transcripts and translations of radio programs that helped stoke the violence.

T-Kay Sangwand is a human rights archivist for the University of Texas Library's Human Rights Documentation Initiative. She and her colleagues worked with Rwandan memorial groups and a variety of foundations to help create the archives.

She says she has been most moved by the hundreds of video testimonials in the archives from survivors.

Ms. T-KAY SANGWAND (Human Rights Archivist, University of Texas Library's Human Rights Documentation Initiative): A lot of them are from young survivors who are talking about being children during the genocide, seeing their parents being killed in front of them, having to hide, and what survival was like during that time.

HANSEN: Sangwand says the testimonials are not just stories of trauma.

Ms. SANGWAND: Rwandans are not interested in being portrayed solely as victims of the genocide, but this project really highlights people's strength and resilience and will to survive.

HANSEN: For a link to Genocide Archive Rwanda and photos from the collection, go to the Picture Show Blog at our website, NPR.org.

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