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Monday, December 22, 1997 Published at 18:58 GMT

World: Africa

Rwandan government statement

The Tutsi-led government in Rwanda has issued a statement calling on Hutu civilians to dissociate themselves from Hutu rebels suspected of a massacre in the northwest of the country earlier this month in which more than three hundred Tutsis were killed.

The statement was issued by the prime minister's office and broadcast on national radio.

It said the massacres in the communes of Ruhengeri and Gisenyi were a continuation of the 1994 genocide, during which hundreds-of-thousands of ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed by Hutu extremists.

The statement placed the responsibility of the attack on Hutu rebel leaders living abroad, and called on the international community to arrest them.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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