According to Localcollegeexplorer, on the threshold of the 21st century, the normalization of political life began in the country. The first stage was the local elections in March 2001, which recorded a high participation in the vote and the election of candidates who all presented themselves on a non-party basis; held regularly according to UN observers, the elections were nevertheless contested by some humanitarian organizations for the presence of a single candidate in many constituencies. On the judicial front, the action of the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for the crimes of the Rwanda, based in Arusha (Tanzania), continued: the slowness of the Court in instructing and concluding the trials, in spite of a very high annual budget,(lit. “the grass on which the old sages sat to resolve small peasant conflicts”), ancient people’s courts rethought on the basis of the inspiring principles of the Commission for truth and reconciliation (1995 – 1998) commissioned by N. Mandela in the Republic of South Africa. According to these principles, only the public confession of crimes, the request for forgiveness and the condemnation to an exemplary punishment opened the way to the possible rehabilitation, the ethical foundation of a newly cohesive community. The Rwandan government, forced to deal with the chronic lack of funds to educate judicial and police personnel and to build new prisons – insufficient to contain the more than 115,000 detainees awaiting trial for crimes committed in 1994 and related to the massacre of over 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus – so he decided to designate over 250,000 judges (elected by the people) for the gacacas, competent to judge all those who had committed crimes less serious, still imposing penalties up to life imprisonment. But there was no lack of criticism from some humanitarian organizations that contested the appointment of about 600 – 700 judges themselves involved in various capacities in the genocide and considered the trial procedures of these popular courts to be partial and the defendants themselves, often victims of lynchings and forced to flee the country, were not sufficiently protected. After a running-in period, the gacacas, operational since 2002, allowed the education of numerous processes; in that same year, in April, the trial of Colonel T. Bagosora opened in Arusha, considered one of the main responsible for the massacres together with three other officers, to ascertain the responsibilities of the army leaders in planning the mass killings.
Internal political life, dominated by the Front patriotique rwandais (FPR), left little room for any form of opposition. In May 2003 the draft constitution which provided for the formation of a bicameral parliament and the election of the president by universal suffrage was approved by a very large majority in a referendum; in June of the same year the constitution came into force banning from political competition any formation based on ethnic, religious, etc. belonging. In August the presidential elections were won with 95.5% of the votes by President P. Kagame, victorious over the two Hutu challengers, forced to participate as independent due to the ban imposed on parties on an ethnic basis. The legislative elections in September, the first since the genocide, saw the success of the FPR (33 seats) foregone. Respectively 7 and 6 seats were awarded the Parts social-démocrate and libéral parts. There were 24 seats (out of a total of 80) provided for by the constitution for female representation, indirectly elected at the provincial level.
Between 2005 and 2006, while the judicial proceedings of the Court of Arusha and the gacacas intensified (at the beginning of 2006 there were more than 4,200 cases examined by the latter) some cases of connivance of the Rwandan Catholic Church in the massacre emerged. France’s relations with the Kigali regime were also deteriorating, which in November 2006 broke off diplomatic relations due to accusations launched by a French court against some officers close to Kagame, allegedly responsible for the assassination of former president J. Habyarimana in April 1994.
On the international level, the first years of the 21st century. they registered a pause in the high regional conflict; in July 2002, with the signing of the peace agreements between the Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), a decisive turning point was marked towards the peaceful solution of the conflict that had seen the Rwanda and Uganda on Congolese soil in the long war that had devastated the DRC. The agreement, followed by the withdrawal of Rwandan troops, put a stop to Kigali’s ambitions towards Kivu and Ituri, the rich eastern provinces of the DRC bordering the Rwanda; new episodes of guerrilla warfare in 2004 and 2005 however, they saw the Rwandan troops involved again in support of the Congolese rebel factions.