Rwanda blames DRC for collaboration with FDLR

By Théophile Niyitegeka
On 27 May 2022 at 06:12

The Spokesperson of the Government of Rwanda, Yolande Makolo has requested the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to explain why Congolese Army (FARDC) has collaborated with the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR).

FDLR is rebel outfit comprised of remnant masterminds of the 1994 Genocide against Tutsi who at different times plotted hit-and-run attacks to Rwanda and repelled back.

It has been quite some time since FARDC was reported to be working with different rebel groups based in eastern part of the country including FDLR to fight M23 rebel outfit.

The fighting erupted in March this year and later halted for a while. It however resumed towards the end of last week.

During the fight, FARDC shelled projectiles on Rwandan territory which injured residents in three sectors including Kinigi and Nyange (in Musanze District) and Gahunga in Burera District. The shelling also left houses destroyed.

Rwandan Government Spokesperson, Yolande Makolo has said that ‘the fighting between FARDC and M23 is an intra-Congolese conflict’ noting that Rwanda has no interest of being dragged into the matter.

“The DRC foreign minister should explain why the FARDC fighting alongside FDLR/Interahamwe in their ranks shelled Rwandan territory on 19 March 2022 and again on 23 May 2022,” she said.

She also inquired into the motive behind cooperation with FDLR comprised of remnants of genocidaires forces that still have intentions to destabilize Rwanda.

DRC has shelled Rwanda’s land at different times since the fight erupted. Makolo has said that it would be legitimate for Rwanda to react following these incidents but highlighted that the country but has no intention to do so.

“While it would be legitimate for Rwanda to respond to the repetitive attacks of FARDC on our territory, Rwanda is not involved in the ongoing fighting in Eastern DRC and has no intention of being drawn into an internal matter of the DRC,” she stated.

Makolo further staid that Rwanda wants to collaborate with neighbouring countries for a sustainable solution to insecurity in the region.

“This is why the Rwanda Defence Force requested urgent investigation by the regional Extended Joint Verification Mechanism of this week’s cross-border shelling in Musanze and Burera Districts,” she noted.

Headquartered in Goma, the EJVM was launched in September 2012 in Goma and comprises of military experts from the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) Member States. It monitors and carries out investigations on security incidents.

Rwanda has blamed DRC for collaboration with FDLR.