Rwanda has accused the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) of attempting to escalate tensions between the two countries by purporting that Rwanda Defence Force (RDF) is looking to deploy in the country basing on an alleged statement issued by the Rwandan army. declaring that it will officially sending troops to the neighbouring country.
A statement issued by the Congolese Armed Forces (FARDC) on Wednesday claimed that RDF had said that it would deploy in parts of Eastern DRC “under the pretext of fighting the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR/FOCA)” but Rwanda says the army never issued such a statement.
“A communiqué issued today by the armed forces of the DRC claims to be reacting to a 18 July statement by the Government of Rwanda which was neither issued nor exists,”
“This claim by the FARDC is merely a pretext aimed at escalating hostilities and justifying an attack on Rwandan soil, while they continue to support, arm and fight alongside the genocidal militia FDLR. As reiterated earlier, Rwanda will maintain mechanisms in place to guard against violation of our airspace and borders and will counter any spill-over from the conflict in Eastern DRC,” a statement by the Rwanda Government Spokesperson Yolande Makolo reads.
Rwanda’s reaction came after DRC made an alarm to the international community that RDF was preparing to send its troops to Congolese territory in an incursion in areas of Masisi, Rutshuru and Nyiragongo, claiming that the Rwandan army was looking to formalise its presence on Congolese soil.
The statement signed by Major General Sylvain Ekenge, FARDC Spokesperson pointed out that DRC will respond in equal measure when RDF attacks DRC.