Published on 7 Apr 2009 Sections

Fifteen years on from the Rwandan genocide

25-year-old Placidia is pictured crying as she recounts her experience in April 1994. (DIFD)To mark the 15th anniversary of the Rwandan genocide, the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) has released photographs depicting the lives of survivors.

These pictures come straight from DFID, and are not a product of Channel 4 News journalism, but they do tell an interesting tale of those who suffered, survived and have had to rebuild their lives.

25-year-old Placidia is pictured crying as she recounts her experience in April 1994. She saw her parents and all six brothers killed in front of her. She knew her killers, they were her neighbours.

25-year-old Placidia is pictured crying as she recounts her experience in April 1994. (DIFD)

 

Placidia escaped, but aged 10 was raped countless times, hacked with machetes and left for dead in a mass grave. She was not rescued for four days. It was 18 months before she could walk again.

 

It is now 15 years since the Rwandan genocide of April 1994, when up to a million Rwandans were murdered in just 100 days. The unburied bones of those who died are gathered and displayed at memorial centres all across Rwanda.

 

DIFD)

Fifteen years after these horrors, Placidia is rebuilding her life. With help from a £4.25 million DFID-backed programme (CTP) to care for and treat genocide survivors infected with HIV and AIDS she has a much loved cow which produces enough milk for herself and extra to sell, she farms her family plot and is back at school hoping one day to become an accountant.

Every week Patricia, 42, visits Placidia and has supported her throughout her recovery. In April memories are hardest to ignore and each year Placidia spends most of this month with Patricia.

DFID)

To see more images from Rwanda and read more stories of survival, go to the picture gallery on the Channel 4 News website.

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