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CNN's African Voices Profiles Eugene Rutagarama, "Rwanda's Conservation King"

  • Friday, May 14, 2010

Washington, DC--Eugene Rutagarama, who has spent 20 years protecting Africa's endangered mountain gorillas in war-torn Rwanda, is being featured this week on CNN's African Voices.

Recipient of the Jean Paul Getty Prize in 1996, the Goldman Environmental Prize in 2001, and recognized as a CNN Hero in 2007, Rutagarama is Director of the International Gorilla Conservation Program (IGCP), a coalition of the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF), Fauna & Flora International, and the World Wide Fund for Nature. Formed in 1991, IGCP works to conserve mountain gorillas in the three countries where they are found, Rwanda, Uganda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The first African to head up the transboundary coalition, Rutagarama has faced persecution and conflict and seen his colleagues killed in Rwanda during one of the worst ethnic conflicts of the 20th century. In the CNN profile, he talks about his experiences and his attachment to the world's most highly endangered great ape, in whose eyes he sees the "need for protection, the need for friendship."

Watch Eugene Rutagarama: Rwanda's Conservation King.

Support AWF's work to conserve the highly endangered mountain gorilla.

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