RDF destroys 130 tonnes of expired weapons

On 28 November 2017 at 07:47

Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF) has started an exercise that seeks to destroy a total of 130 tonnes of expired munitions, unexploded ordnances and faulty explosives as a way to avoid their inconveniences on national security.

The eight day exercise started Monday in RDF’s Gabiro Combat Training Centre in Eastern Province.

Speaking at the event RDF’s army chief of staff, Maj. Gen. Jacques Musemakweli said that in the aftermath of the liberation struggle and the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi there were arms proliferation around the country which was a threat to the national security.

He said the exercise is part of the implementation of the 2004 Nairobi Protocol on prevention, control and reduction of small and light weapons in the region, a protocol which was signed by 14 countries.

“Destroying these 130 tonnes of expired weapons publicly shows the will of Rwanda in implementing the protocol,” he said

He called on regional countries’ contribution in fighting against illegal use of weapons for the sake of the common security.

The Executive Secretary of Regional Centre on Small Arms (RECSA), Theoneste Mutsindashyaka said the exercise underlines the Rwanda’s will in controlling weapons through destructing expired ones.

He said that only ¼ of weapons from across the World are under governments’ control. He said the prevalence of weapons scattered across the World are seen in different insecurity cases that appear from different parts of the globe.

He said that it is the 6th time the exercise took place as last year 55 tonnes were also destroyed.

Mutsindashyaka emphasized that Rwanda has advanced in weapons destruction and they target to introduce a school teaching the act at Gishari in Rwamagana District.

An estimated 52,807 tonnes of ammunition were demolished between 1994 and 2011.