Rwanda Commemoration Project: Genocide In Our Time

On January 26, 2004, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan called for the establishment of a UN Committee on Preventing Genocide and the nomination of a Special Rapporteur who would monitor "massive and systematic violations of human rights and threats to international peace and security." The attached draft letters can be used as a model to send to national and world leaders to inform them of your efforts in marking this important anniversary and to support the Secretary General's proposals. Be sure to personalize them and to send them to national, local and global leaders. Your voice matters.

  • Letter to Kofi Annan (HTML | RTF)

  • World Leader Letter (HTML | RTF)

  • DATE

    NAME
    ORGANIZATION
    ADDRESS

    The Honorable Kofi Annan
    Secretary General, United Nations
    United Nations Headquarters
    First Avenue at 46th Street
    New York, NY 10017

    Dear Secretary-General Annan:

    WE/I ARE/AM writing to express OUR/MY support for the UN's recognition of April 7, 2004 as the International Day of Reflection on the Genocide in Rwanda and to support your recent call for the establishment of a Special Rapporteur and UN Committee on Preventing Genocide.

    [I/WE/NAME OF ORGANIZATION] HAS/HAVE joined together with schools, community groups, faith based organizations and individuals around the world to mark the tenth anniversary of the Rwandan genocide by [DESCRIBE YOUR ACTIVITY/EVENT].

    The Rwandan genocide holds many lessons for the international community. It is only through profound reflection and accompanying action that we can properly learn these lessons and prevent genocide from happening again. Your call for the establishment of a new Committee and Special Rapporteur to prevent genocide is a welcome development and we hope that it will be accompanied by swift action.

    United Nations bodies have been able to make great strides in protecting and promoting human rights, and it is OUR/MY hope that the establishment of meaningful mechanisms to prevent genocide will defuse situations around the world so that they do not become the massive tragedies we have all too often seen.

    It is not enough simply to say "Never Again" without taking concrete action to make those words a reality. We have sent our support of your proposal to our national leaders and hope that action will be taken soon.

    Sincerely,

    NAME
    ORGANIZATION


    DATE

    YOUR NAME
    YOUR ADDRESS

    INSERT NAME OF NATIONAL/WORLD LEADER ADDRESS


    HONORABLE/ YOUR EXCELLENCY/ PRESIDENT...:

    As you no doubt are painfully aware, the 20th century saw genocides in nearly every region of the world: Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas. As we commemorate the tenth anniversary of the Rwandan genocide this April, where nearly one million people were killed in a hundred days, we are reminded that genocide is not a thing of the past, but it is a force that continues today. The numbers of people lost to genocide and mass killings is unknown. What is clear is that it is incumbent on us, in the 21st century, to create mechanisms that seek to stop and prevent genocide from plaguing the human race.

    I/WE/NAME OF ORGANIZATION has/have joined together with schools, community groups, faith based organizations and individuals around the world to mark the tenth anniversary of the Rwandan genocide by [DESCRIBE YOUR ACTIVITY/EVENT].

    As part of our remembrance for the victims in Rwanda, I/WE are writing to ask your support of the United Nations' efforts to prevent further genocide. Specifically, we hope that you will support UN Secretary General Kofi Annan's January 26, 2004 call for the establishment of a UN Committee on Preventing Genocide and the nomination of a Special Rapporteur who would monitor massive and systematic violations of human rights and threats to international peace and security. United Nations bodies such as these have been able to make great strides in protecting and promoting human rights, and it is OUR/MY hope that such mechanisms would allow the world community to monitor situations so that they do not become the genocidal tragedies we have all too often seen.

    It is not enough simply to say "Never Again" without taking concrete action to make those words a reality. Please give this request your most serious consideration and send your country's support to U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan.

    Sincerely,


    NAME
    ORGANIZATION (if applicable)