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The Media and the Rwanda Genocide

Allan Thompson, assistant professor at Carleton University's School of Journalism and Communication, Canada, will launch his latest book The Media and the Rwanda Genocide, at a public lecture followed by a panel discussion at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) on Wednesday 17 January.

In 1994 the Rwanda genocide claimed the lives of an estimated 800,000 people in the space of 100 days. The news media played a key role in the genocide. Hate radio broadcasts promoted and encouraged the violence, 49 media professionals were murdered and 25 are currently in jail, accused of inciting or participating in the genocide. The Media and the Rwanda Genocide is the first book to explore both the international and local sides of the media equation.

Professor Thompson's presentation will be followed by a panel discussion with Richard Dowden, director of the Royal African Society, the journalist and academic Linda Melvern, Mike Dottridge, human rights consultant and journalist and Lars Waldorf, lecturer in International Law and Human Rights, Institute of Commonwealth Studies.

Professor Thompson joined Carleton University in 2003 after spending 17 years as a reporter with the Toronto Star, Canada's largest circulation daily newspaper. He first reported from Rwanda in 1996 during the mass exodus of Rwandan refugees from eastern Zaire. He is closely involved in the Rwanda initiative, a journalism teaching partnership between Carlton and the National University of Rwanda.

  • Richard Dowden has travelled across and written extensively about most of the African continent, he has been African editor of both the Independent and the Economist.
  • Linda Melvern began to investigate the circumstances of the genocide in Rwanda in April 1994 and has published numerous books, articles and papers on the subject.
  • Mike Dottridge has worked with and in human rights NGOs for over 25 years. He was a desk officer with Amnesty International at the time of the Rwanda genocide.
  • Lars Waldorf, ran the Human Rights Watch's field office in Rwanda from 2002-2004 and covered genocide trials at the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (2001).

This event is hosted by POLIS| and the Crisis States Research Centre|.

The Media and the Rwanda Genocide is on Wednesday 17 January 2007 at 4-5.30pm in U8 lecture theatre, Tower 1, LSE, Aldwych, London WC2A. This event is free and open to all with no ticket required, and will be followed by a drinks reception. Entry is on a first come, first served basis.


For more details about this event please contact Laura Kyrke-Smith by emailing polis@lse.ac.uk| 

To reserve a press seat, please contact Jessica Winterstein, LSE Press Office, on 020 7955 7060 or email j.winterstein@lse.ac.uk|

10 January 2007