4,500 Rwandan Refugees Return

News and Press Release
Originally published
KIGALI, Rwanda (AP) -- Another 4,500 Hutu refugees returned home to Rwanda on Tuesday, following 8,000 who left camps in neighboring Burundi after weekend violence left three refugees dead.
Paul Stromberg, a spokesman for the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, said about 125 trucks crossed the muddy border to the Rwandan town of Butare, where about 1,500 refugees were housed in a soccer stadium.

The refugees had 48 hours before they had to head for the homes they fled two years ago when a Hutu government-sponsored massacre killed more than half a million people, mostly minority Tutsis. The Hutu refugees fear reprisals from the Rwandan government, now led by Tutsis.

Another 5,000 of the 14,500 Hutu refugees remaining at the Magara camp in northern Burundi were expected to pass through Butare on Wednesday, Stromberg said.

Over the weekend, Burundian soldiers clashed with refugees who pelted them with stones. The soldiers shot three to death and wounded three others. Nearly 8,000 refugees left on Monday.

=A9 Copyright 1996 The Associated Press