Tuesday, August 16, 2005

MOUNTAIN GORILLAS - Rwanda turns to tourism

South Coast Today reports on the burgeoning Rwandan tourism industry, and the difficulty in balancing the natural beauty of the country with the horrifying genocide of 1994, when some 800,000 Tutsis or moderate Hutus were brutally murdered during a bloody three months.
Rwanda would rather lure visitors by touting the country's natural beauty. But it's a task made difficult by the unrest in the Great Lakes region of Africa, where United Nations peacekeepers struggle to rein in many rebel groups that for years have menaced the area.
Last month, the country established the Rwanda Travel & Tours Association, made up of hoteliers, airlines, tour operators and travel agencies. The officials say the country's main attraction is its mountain gorilla population at the Parc National Des Volcans, part of the Virunga Conservation Area in the northwest part of the country.