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Rice sifting the traditional way - Notes from Burundi

Graziella Hariyongabo is a very articulate, fourth year interpretation student whose command of English allows her to discuss the most complex issues in a fluid, even rapid fire manner. She hopes to become a journalist for the BBC or a writer. In her mind, “the violence in Burundi stemmed from misunderstandings between the ethnic groups. After independence in 1962, heroes on both sides were assassinated. Then there was genocide in 1972 and the revenge that followed in a series of civil wars.”

“I am Burundian,” she says proudly. “Some tell me that I am Hutu. We need to tell the truth about the past, but we also need to know how to resolve the problems. There is a new Truth and Reconciliation Commission that has begun but many are reluctant to participate. That Commission has much to do. Some people will ignore it. I know that violence will never resolve problems. Instead, we can teach about negotiation in schools and at the University. In Somalia, however, the Burundian government had no other choice (but to intervene and help the Somali government against Al Shabaab).

“I think that student clubs could be developed in the provinces to serve as a focus for change. So often, poverty became a source of conflict as politicians used poor people to gain power.”



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Climbers & Bats GCRT

This research team creates a working group of rock climbing interest groups, CSU biologists and human dimension specialists, and CSU students to strategically collect information on bat roost locations and share bat conservation information with the climbing community. View details of their GCRT here and their blog entry here.

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