“Nothing can stop you from loving each other.”

The Genocide in Rwanda It began on April 6, 1994, when a plane carrying Rwandan Hutu President Habyarimana and his Burundian counterpart Cyprien Ntaryamira was shot down. Both died.

Hutu extremists blamed the attack on the Tutsi rebel group of the Rwandan Patriotic Front and then launched the attack. Well organized killing campaign which claimed the lives of nearly a million people, the majority of whom were from the Tutsi minority.

Among the Hutu targets were Bernadette Mukakabera and her husband, Kabera Vedaste, who belonged to the Tutsi community. Gratian Nyaminani, a Hutu, lived with Bernadette in Mushaka, western Rwanda, with his family. Both families were farmers.

at least 800,000 peopleAn ethnic Tutsi and moderate Hutu, they were killed within 100 days by Hutu militias during the 1994 Rwandan genocide. Amid the attacks, Gratien killed Bernadette’s husband. He confessed in 2004 and publicly apologized to Bernadette.

At the time, he had already been held for 10 years for his role in the massacres, and is now being tried by traditional courts in Rwanda that have dealt with genocidal suspects. During these hearings, members of the accused communities come face to face, with both sides providing evidence of what happened and how it happened, according to the BBC.

During these sessions Gratien told Bernadette how he had killed her husband and asked her to forgive him. I did that. The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) said that Gratien served a two-year community service sentence because of the amnesty he received instead of a 19-year prison sentence.

When Gratien spent 10 years in detention before publicly apologizing, his family tried to reconcile with Bernadette and their son, Alfred. Son of Bernadette He was 14 years old when his father was killed by Gratian. At the time of the genocide, Gratien’s daughter, Yankurije Donata, was nine years old, but as she grew up she decided to help Bernadette take care of her home. He began to do this during the years of his father’s arrest.

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She told the BBC: “I decided to go and help Alfred’s mother with the housework and even the farm because she had no one else to help her given that my father was responsible for her husband’s death.” I think Alfred fell in love with me when he was helping his mother..

Bernadette also welcomed her with open arms whenever she visited for help. “She helped me find out her father killed my husband, and she knew I didn’t get help because my son was taken to the hospital.”

Bernadette said she liked Yankeureg’s heart and demeanor, so she had no qualms about her son, Alfred, marrying her.

“I felt I could be the best wife because she understands me more than anyone else. I convinced my son to marry her,” Yankourig explained.

Gratin was surprised when they gave him the news. Yancurig said he wondered why a family he had been so hurt would want anything to do with his daughter. But he finally agrees and gives his daughter and Alfred the go-ahead for marriage.

Both They were married by the local Catholic Church in 2008. Two years earlier, Gratien had confessed before the congregation in the church, asking forgiveness for his crimes.

Bernadette Mukakabera tells her story as part of the Catholic Church’s ongoing efforts to bring about reconciliation in a fractured society.

«Our children have nothing to do with what happened.. “They fell in love and nothing should stop people from loving each other,” Bernadette told the BBC.

During the Rwandan genocide, more than two million refugees fled Rwanda, causing a humanitarian crisis. Rwanda has, over the years, accused France of complicity in the mass killings, but France has repeatedly denied this.

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