Home World Mbaye Diagne: UN Captain who tried to stop the genocide in Rwanda

Mbaye Diagne: UN Captain who tried to stop the genocide in Rwanda


Mbaye Diagne: Following the killing of Rwandan President Juvénal Habyarimana on April 6, 1994, which kicked off the Tutsi genocide, the Presidential Guard executed Prime Minister Agathe Uwiliingiyimana and her husband. Almost ten UN Blue Helmets escorted them.

Senegalese captain Mbaye Diagne, a UNAMIR (United Nations Assistance Mission for Ruanda) military observer, went to the killing site and saved the Prime Minister’s children, taking them to safety. Meanwhile, Interahamwe Hutu militias began hunting out Tutsis and slaughtering them with machetes.

Mbaye Diagnen UN Captain

Mbaye Diagne

All foreigners were evacuated in the following days, and the UN ordered the withdrawal of practically all of UNAMIR, leaving the country at the mercy of the slaughterers. Captain Diagne was one of the 270 soldiers who remained in Rwanda under General Romeo Dallaire’s command.

He tried everything he could to save as many people as he could. Diagne surreptitiously transported nearly 600 people in the trunk of his white off-road with the lettering “UN,” hiding a few of individuals at a time under blankets and various household products, and assisting them in securely passing through many checkpoints to reach the border. In May 2013, however, he was murdered by a mortar blast fired from a roadblock.

He was dubbed “the bravest of the brave” by his commander, Romeo Dallaire.

Diagne abandoned his family, including his wife and two young children. Ms. Yacine is now the President of an organisation founded in her husband’s name to spread a culture of peace.

Enrico Muratore reported on this. In 2013, a proposal was filed for Monte Stella.

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