Rwanda, officially the Republic of Rwanda, is a sovereign state in central and east Africa. Rwanda is a landlocked East African country whose green, mountainous landscape has earned it the nickname “Land of a Thousand Hills.” Its renowned Volcanoes National Park is home to mountain gorillas and golden monkeys. Bordering Congo and Uganda, the population is young and predominantly rural, with a density among the highest in Africa. Rwandans are composed of three ethnic groups: the Hutu, Tutsi and Twa.
Population: 11.78 Mil
President: Paul Kagame
Prime Minister: Anastase Murekezi
The Rwandan Genocide of 1994 is the most painful memory of the slaughter of Tutsi and moderate Hutu in Rwanda by members of the Hutu majority. During the approximate 100-day period from April 7 to mid-July 1994, an estimated 500,000–1,000,000 Rwandans were killed, constituting as much as 70% of the Tutsi and 20% of Rwanda’s total population. The genocide took place in the context of the Rwandan Civil War, an ongoing conflict beginning in 1990 between the Hutu-led government and the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF), which was largely composed of Tutsi refugees whose families had fled to Uganda following earlier waves of Hutu violence against the Tutsi.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is a country located in Central Africa and is the 2nd largest country in Africa and the 11th largest in the world, boasting a population of the 4th largest in Africa of 75 million. From 1965 to 1997 it was named Zaire. The Congolese Civil Wars, which began in 1996, brought about the end of Mobutu Sese Seko’s 31-year reign and devastated the country.
Population: 67.51 Mil
President: Joseph Kabila
The wars ultimately involved nine African nations, multiple groups of UN peacekeepers and twenty armed groups, and resulted in the deaths of 5.4 million people. The DRC is extremely rich in natural resources, but political instability, a lack of infrastructure and a culture of corruption have limited development, extraction and exploitation efforts. Besides the capital, Kinshasa, the city of Goma is an important entry point from the border of Rwanda. Rwanda carries one of the most active and deadliest volcanoes, Mount Nyiragongo, with an elevation over 11,000 feet it last erupted in 2002.