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Rwanda Commemorates 20th Anniversary Of Genocide


Rwanda has begun a week of official mourning Monday to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the country's genocide.

President Paul Kagame and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon lit a flame, which will burn for 100 days -- the length of time the genocide lasted.

More than 800,000 people, mostly ethnic Tutsis, were killed at the hands of Hutu extremists in 1994.

The slaughter began on April 6, 1994 shortly after Hutu President Juvenal Habyarimana was killed when his plane was shot down over Kigali.

France's Ambassador Michel Flesch was barred from attending commemoration events after a diplomatic row erupted between the two countries.

The dispute started when Kagame in an interview accused France and Belgium of helping lay the groundwork for the genocide and participating in some killings.
Based on reporting by AFP, AP, and BBC
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