On Monday 18th October 2021, RDF released a statement explaining that a Rwandan soldier crossed into DRC unintentionally as he pursued smugglers in Bugeshi sector, Rubavu district of Western Province.
““On 18th Oct 2021, Rwanda security forces pursued smugglers who crossed the Rwanda-DRC border at Hehu Cell, Bugeshi Sector, Rubavu District. Rwandan law enforcement forces unintentionally crossed a few meters into the DRC while pursuing the smugglers who were carrying unidentified packages and believed to have been armed,” reads the statement.
FARDC soldiers arrested the soldier who crossed into the neighboring country.
Following the incident, regional and international media houses reported that both countries’ militaries exchanged fire, which officials from both sides dismissed.
Speaking to the media on Wednesday; DRC Government Spokesperson, Patrick Muyaya explained that what happened is not unusual.
“We refuted the reports and we also have to look at circumstances under which it happened. It is not a blow to relations with neighboring countries,” he said.
Muyaya pointed out examples of similar border incidences and urged people against exaggerating the situation.
“It does not mean that our army is incompetent. Other countries including India and elsewhere across the world engage in serious clashes in similar circumstances. So, there is no need to compare the situations. This is something simple,” he said.
Commenting on the cross-border incident recently, RDF assured that it remains committed to maintaining good relations with FARDC and continue to collaborate on security matters.