Rwanda- Doctors Can't Stop Genocide

Goma, North Kivu, DRC. A man and children stand by a tree at a roadblock on the outskirts of Goma. According to the UN, more than 800,000 people have been displaced in North and South Kivu provinces as a result of military operations against the Rwandan rebel group Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) and local militia allies since January 2009. A split within the National Congress for the PeopleÕs Defense (CNDP) rebel group, formerly led by Laurent Nkunda, and a joint Rwandan-Congolese military offensive against the FDLR have further blurred the lines between the warring parties in Eastern DRC.
Moises Saman/Magnum Photos
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Twenty years ago, the Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) team in Kigali saw the town descend into violence. These were the first days of what would go on to become known as genocide. Throughout their stay, the organization's humanitarian principles were often violated by the perpetrators of the genocide. This lead to the startling realization of the limits of humanitarian action. For the first and only time in its history, MSF made a public demand for armed intervention, pointing out a very simple truth: doctors can't stop genocide.