Angolan President, Lourenço visits Rwanda

On 11 November 2022 at 12:30

The President of Angola, Manuel Gonçalves Lourenço who serves as the mediator on tensions between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has arrived in Rwanda during a visit in which he will meet with President Paul Kagame.

His arrival has been confirmed by Urugwiro Village, according to The New Times.

Angolan Minister of Foreign Affairs, Téte António arrived in Rwanda on Thursday evening ahead of the visit of Lourenço.

Upon arrival at Kigali International Airport, António was welcomed by Shakilla Umutoni Kazimbaya, the Director General for Africa at Rwanda’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

“I arrived in Kigali this evening ahead of the visit of H. E. João Manuel Gonçalves Lourenço, President of the Republic of Angola to meet his Brother, H. E. Paul Kagame, President of the Republic of Rwanda ; always delighted to be here,” he tweeted.

António arrived in Rwanda from Goma where he met with military officers from the Expanded Joint Verification Mechanism (EJVM).

The EJVM is a mechanism of the International Conference of the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) composed of military officers from the 12 member countries that is charged with monitoring and verification of border violations between DRC and neighbouring countries.

He was in the country to introduce Lieutenant General Nassone João from Angola as the new coordinator of EJVM.

All the visits align with Luanda Process to restore peace in the region, particularly to mend tensions between Rwanda and DRC.

DRC has been accusing Rwanda of supporting M23 rebel group which continues to capture different areas in eastern part of the country.

Rwanda repeatedly refuted the allegations and advised DRC to solve internal problems instead of blame games.

Rwanda also accuses Congo of supporting the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR), a terrorist group with intentions to destabilize its security.

On Saturday last week, Rwanda’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and his counterpart of DRC Christophe Lutundula held talks in Angola.

They also met with Angolan President, Angola, João Lourenço who is the mediator of both countries’ tensions.

At the time, concerned parties released a joint statement indicating it was meant to restore trust between the two neighbouring countries.

The meeting was preceded by another one between military intelligence chiefs from both countries aimed at resuming the implementation of Luanda Roadmap laid out on 6th July 2022.

As per resolutions of the meeting, both ministers of foreign affairs agreed on the necessity to maintain political dialogue between leaders of DRC and Rwanda as way to end tensions between the two brother countries.

Among others, the meeting resolved on the deployment of troops under the Mechanism EJVM to assess the situation in Goma.

It was also resolved that heads of military intelligence will maintain discussions as meetings to mediate both countries through Nairobi and Luanda processes go on.

The meetings are taking place following DRC’ expulsion of Rwanda’s envoy and speeches alluding to a war against where President Tshisekedi recently disclosed that he had two options to solve problems with Rwanda: diplomacy and war.

He explained that the first option did not yield good results and requested for mass recruitment of the youth into the military to deal with the enemy.

In the past few days, Congolese Army’s fighter jet Sukhoi 25 violated Rwanda’s airspace, an action which Rwanda described as a serious provocation.

Rwanda did not take any military action but disclosed that it is closely monitoring the situation in DRC.

President Lourenço is expected to hold talks with his counterpart of Rwanda, Paul Kagame.