CrisisWatch Rwanda

Unchanged Situation

Authorities expressed concerns over military intervention of southern African regional body in eastern DR Congo (DRC).  

In letter to AU Chair, FM Biruta 3 March expressed reservations about AU support to southern African bloc (SADC) mission in DRC, alleging force’s collaboration with DRC forces and anti-Rwanda armed groups carried risk of exacerbating conflict; Biruta urged political process rather than military intervention; AU next day, however, endorsed SADC mission. Meanwhile, in 25 March interview, President Kagame addressed accusations of Rwandan military presence in eastern DRC, citing factors including anti-Kigali Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) as potential reasons for such presence, without directly acknowledging or denying existence of Rwandan troops in region. While stating readiness for dialogue over future of eastern DRC, Kagame criticised Congolese authorities and also South Africa (who contribute troops to SADC mission) for collaborating with FDLR. Earlier, Kagame 11 March visited Angolan capital Luanda to discuss DRC crisis amid Angolan diplomatic efforts (see DR Congo).

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