Rwanda says it is putting troops by the border with Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) on the alert following the escalation of tensions between the two countries, exacerbated by the expulsion of Rwanda’s envoy by Kinshasa.
In a statement issued by the Government Spokesperson, Yolande Makolo, Rwanda said it noted with regret the decision by the Government of the DRC to expel the Rwandan Ambassador Vincent Karega on Saturday.
“Rwandan security forces at our border with the DRC remain on alert, as we continue to monitor the Congolese escalation,”
“Of particular concern is the continued collusion between the Congolese armed forces with the FDLR, and their attempts to target the border area with heavy weaponry, as well as the bellicose anti-Rwanda rhetoric being broadcast by DRC officials,” the government statement reads in part.
Rwanda said will continue to bring to the attention of the international community the persistent hate speech, public incitement and violent harassment against Rwandans and Congolese Kinyarwanda-speaking communities in the DRC, carried out by Congolese officials and the general public.
Kigali also reiterated its condemnation of the collaboration between DRC government forces FARDC and the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) which threatens Rwanda’s security.
“The integration of the FDLR within the FARDC and their collaboration is directly linked to ever increasing hate speech and violence in DRC against Rwandans and Kinyarwanda speaking Congolese communities,”
“It is regrettable the Government of the DRC continues to scapegoat Rwanda to cover up and distract from their own governance and security failures,” the statement adds.
It added that Rwanda remains committed to contributing to a sustainable, peaceful regional security solution within the agreed regional frameworks, including the Luanda Roadmap and the Nairobi Process.
The expulsion of Amb. Karega followed humiliating defeat of FARDC by M23 which continues to capture significant locations of North Kivu, threatening to advance towards Goma if their positions continue to be attacked.