Rwanda Essay Research Paper Rwandas population has

Rwanda Essay, Research Paper

Rwanda?s population has traditionally been composed of Hutu,Tusi and Twa

peoples. however, civil stife at independence and genocidal civil warin 1994

have altered these percentages. the 1991 offical cenus estimated the country?s

population at 7,164,995. Talking into consideration Rwanda?s growth rate, the

population in 1996 should have been between 7.8 and 8 million people, but it is

estimated that less than 5.5 to 6 million people were living in Rwanda in late

1995. Rwanda?s people speak a common language, Kinyarwanda, and share many

cultural traditions. More than half of the population is estimated to be Roman

Catholic and another 5 to 10% Protestant Crisitan. Probaly 30% or more hold

traditional beliefs. There is a small Muslium minority. Traditionally, Rwanda

has been Africa?s least urban country ,although migration to the capital,

Kigali,and provincial towns such as Ruhengeri,Butare,and Gisenyi incerased

thoughout the 1980s and the early1990s. Prior to 1994 it eas also the most

densly populated rural county in the world, with more than 2,110 persons per

sq./km. Education is free and officially compulsory for childern between ages 7

to 15, but Rwanda?s school system was virtually destroyed during the civil war

. Most hospitals, including the university of Rwanda, remained closed in 1995.

Most hospitals were ethier closed or without adequate supplies or medical

personnel. History Hutu agriculturalists migrated into what is now Rwanda during

the 7th to 10th centuries AD, followed by pastoral Tutsi between the 14th nd

16th centuries. A feudal monarchy developed that remained in existence for

centuries before Rwanda was absorbed into German east Africa in 1899. Belgium

occupied the area in 1916 and controlled what are now Rwanda and Burundi until

Rwanda gained its independence. Before European occupation, the kingdom of

Rwanda was a somewhat flexible hierarchy with a tutsi king and elitre dominating

the majority Hutu farmers and small Tutsi underclass, although social mobility

and intermarriage blurred the distintions between the groups. the Twa were at

the very bottom of the social order. Both the Germans and the Belgians retained

the monarchy administer the colony. This arrangement gave th Tusi access to

power and economic resouces and intensified ethnic and class divisions. In the

1940?s, however, many Tusti were driven from Rwanda by the Belgians for

advocating independence. The moderate Tusi King Kigari V, who had ruled for

nearly three decades, died in 1959, and more ethnocentric Tutsi seized power.

This contributed to a series of rebellions by Hutu demanding equal rights in

which tens of thousands of Tutsi perished. In 1991, with the support of the

belgian colonist, the Huntu majority took control of the government, abolishied

the Tutsi monochary, and declared Rwanda a republic. Rwandan independence was

not internationally reconized until July 1,1962, when Rwanda and Burundi

formally gained independence as seperate countries. Government Under it original

constitution, Rwandas government consisted of an elected president and a

legislature, the National Assembly. The coutry?s first president was Gregoire

Kayibanda. He was overthown by the military in 1973, and General Juvenal

Habyalimama became president. The National Assembly was suspended. This was

annouced as the first step toward new legislative elections. Economy Most of

Rwandas?s people are farmers, growing only enough food for thier own use. Food

crops include bananas,cassava, sorghum, and millet. Coffee grown on large

plantationsis the nation?s chief exporter. Other important commercial crops

are cotton, tea, and pyrethrum. Cattle,goats,and sheep are raised. Rwanda has

litte industry . Funiture,soap,bricks, and shoes are made for use in the

country. Some tin and gold are mined for export. But poor transportation makes

mining difficult. Some Rwandese work in the copper mines of the neighboring



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