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August 26, 1994     The Message
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August 26, 1994
 

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...... 12 WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Aid agencies stepped up relief efforts and pleaded for more international assistance as chaotic conditions in Rwanda brought a new tide of refugees to bordering Zaire in late Au- gust. As French troops pulled out Aug. 21 from a large refugee "safe zone" in southwestern Rwanda, tens of thousands of Rwandans distrustful of the re- placement U.N. forces fled to- ward bridges across the Ruzizi River to Zaire. Amid continuing reports of murders and reprisals in Rwanda, the Marist Brothers reported Aug. 19 that the num- ber of Marists killed there this year has apparently climbed to six. The announcement followed information received in Rome that Brother Chris Mannion, 43, a member of the Marists' central administration in Rome missing in Rwanda since July 1, had been killed and buried while visiting there to negotiate the release of two fel- low Marists, members of the Tutsi tribe who were being held captive by Hutus. Catholic relief officials re- turning from Rwanda in mid-- August reported massive needs calling for immediate help and long-term development aid. For long-term recovery, they cited a need for restoration of intertribal trust and basic pub- lic services. Catholic Relief Services, the U.S. Catholic aid agency, is providing emergency relief for about 200,000 refugees. It has announced plans to supply about 80,000 Rwandans with seed and tools to plant crops this fall as part of an effort to promote a return to stability in the country. CRS officials said the agency is planning to spend about $30 million on its overall Rwanda relief and recovery program. U.S. dioceses began emergency parish collections for CRS Rwanda aid in late July, and by Aug. 19 dioceses had trans- mitted about $2.25 million to CRS national headquarters in Baltimore. The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana August 26, lg9 I Relief efforts stepped up as Rwanda's refugee crisis grows The latest refugee crisis in the strife-torn central African nation developed quickly in mid-August after France an- nounced that it was pulling its troops out as scheduled from the French- protected zone. French officials estimated that the safe zone, covering about one-tenth of Rwanda, was holding about 2.5 million of the country's 4.4 million inhabi- tants, Zaire closed the border at Bukavu behind the last French troops Aug. 21 Zairean offi- cials said they feared another disaster like the three-day in- flux of some 800,000 refugees into Goma, Zaire, in July, which led to about 43,000 deaths in overcrowded camps. Three times Rwandans tried storming the bridge, known as Ruzizi-One, only to retreat as Zairean paratroopers fired vol- leys of shots into the air. In the previous two days about 45,000 Rwandans had crossed the bridge, bringing the estimated number of refugees living in Bukavu's streets and parks to 100,000. Later in the day Zaire promised to open a smaller bridge a few miles to the south, known as Ruzizi-Two, and U.N. refugee authorities began arranging to truck refugees from there to new camps out- side Bukavu. Archbishop Theodore E. Mc- Carrick of Newark, N.J., re- turning to the United States from a 10-day fact-finding visit to Rwanda, said human rights monitors are desperately needed there both br "national reconciliation and to achieve the early return of refugees from Zaire and Tanzania7 The archbishop, who heads the Committee on Migration of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops, said the new Tutsi-led Rwandan govern- ment seems committed to re- establishing legal safeguards and protections for citizens. It should have the cooperation of other countries in monitoring their actions, he added. During his early August visit there were only two human rights monitors in the country and they had limited means of communication and no way of getting around, Archbishop McCarrick said. "These capabilities have not been provided by the United Nations," the archbishop said. "Consequently those now as- signed as monitors could not say they were certain that re- turning refugees would be safe." He said a U.S. State Depart- ment official recently an- nounced plans to help re-estab- lish the country's judicial system, work toward establish- ing a war crimes tribunal and assist in gathering evidence and preparing cases. The pro- ject includes funding for human rights monitors. The archbishop said impar- tial monitors are essential to creating a climate in which the refugees will feel safe to re- turn. Since the civil war began in April, an estimated half-mil- lion Rwandans have died and millions have fled to refugee camps in the French-protected zone or in neighboring coun- tries. Most of the refugees are Hutus, fearful that the Tutsi- led Rwanda Patriotic Front that took power in July will embark on a campaign of re- venge for the genocidal mas- sacres earlier this year. Most of those who died in the mas- sacres were Tutsis killed by Hutu supporters of the former government. Irish Auxiliary Bishop Donal Murray of Dublin said after a visit to Rwanda that the refuge e crisis can be solved only by a massive combination of international aid and inter- nal rebuilding. The Irish prelate met with government, U.N., and church officials in Rwanda and visited emergency programs run by Trocaire, the Irish Catholic aid and development agency. He called for internationally backed security in the former French-protected zone and ex- tensive aid programs to assure adequate food, shelter and medical care in that region. Another primary need, he said, is the restoration public ser- vices and transportation net- works and a functioning gov- ernment. CRS spokesman Jack Mor- gan said the U.S. aid agency, which has been working in Rwanda for more than 30 years, is pursuing its relief and recovery work in conjunction with European Catholic agen- cies. The European agencies' con- tributions and donations re- ceived by CRS from private funds, corporations and other sources have totaled about $14 million, he said. Among those was a $50,000 contribution from the Mormon Church and a donation put to- gether by a Chicago Catholic businessman to send six trac- tor-trailer rigs to Kenya to haul food and other supplies from African ports to refugee sites in and near Rwanda. The Chicago businessman, Matthew Hehl of Navistar In- ternational Transportation Corp., contacted various ship- ping and trucking colleagues around the country one Sun- day afternoon after he saw a television news report of dead Rwandan refugees being buried in mass graves. To- gether they put up various equipment or transportation contributions, with a total value of about $275,000, to get the six tacks and spare parts and supplies shipped off to Kenya. The continuing Hutu-Tui distrust in Rwanda was hig} lighted in recent commentS exiled Bishop Phocas NikW gize of Ruhengeri, Rwanda, Hutu who fled to Goma wit many of his people in mid-Jul Interviewed in Goma by t Italian Catholic newspape Avvenire, the bishop said 'i people believe the Tutsi g0 ernment's assurances of pea 9 and security for those who r! turn. j "I know of refugees who r turn to Rwanda only in sea of food, then they come bacl Zaire because they feel safe here," he said. The new Tutsi rulers, t said, talk about peace and s curity, but do not make it a r ality. "They are not speakir with words of truth, but wit Weapons," he said. A murderous cycle ij vengeance has long been pa: ! of Rwanda's history, he said. "The history of my cotmtry. marked by blood and by till struggle for power, which cu minated in an ethnic war,  l said. "The massacres are tt children of war." The archbishop of Kiga] Rwanda's capital, and tv other Catholic bishops a] among those who have bee killed in the civil strife. MILLER & MILLER  "Funeral Pre.Planning Since 1940" 424-9274 WE'RE YOUR #1 CHOICE FOR LOW COST AUTO INSURANCE Independent Agent Many companies to choose from 81 years of experience INSURANCE AGENCY 464-5993 JAMES Mater Dei Class of ,,L,)fJ u R'8 u LI N I' tJ--,,,,,' B i BT I I F ( UcensKI. I ll J J J J JJ J J J J J J J J J I El I J I I  I I I Jlll J J l J I I I J J J Ill Industrial, Commerd I - I I 24th Annual Barbeque I '"7 ' " I I I .ene,. o,.e.re. S,.tor. I I m I I ! Mount Saint Joseph  - | LCo Coff I _e  m -- I ] ] Maple Mount, Kentucky 42356 J Total Beverly. D I g I; m ; I I I CAPITAL PRIZES I m, .' I I , I PICNIC1994-SepI. 11.1994 : 46Vatit]ofCoff, ' r-. ! 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