20 June 2012

Rwanda: RDF to Set Up Peacekeeping Base

The Danish Government, on Tuesday, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF) to construct a base to train and facilitate Rwandan troops deployed in peacekeeping missions.

The Minister of Defence, Gen. James Kabarebe and Major General Kurt Mosgaard, the Head of International Security Cooperation at the Danish Chief of Defence Headquarters, signed on behalf of their respective governments.

The MoU falls within the framework of the Eastern Africa Standby Force (EASF) whose objective is to provide standby forces to carry out timely peacekeeping missions in Africa and around the world.

"Through the MoU, the Danish government will part with funds in the range of US$25 million to US$27 million towards the construction of modern infrastructure for Rwanda's peacekeeping troops, where training facilities will be provided," Mosgaard said in an interview.

"The aim of the Danish Government is to support Rwandan troops to provide timely interventions across the world, as we have been encouraged through their exemplary peacekeeping missions in Darfur and South Sudan."

According to information from the ministry, the base will be located at the Rwanda Military Academy in Gako, Eastern Province.

"We expect the facilities to be operational by 2014, fully equipped with supplies and equipment necessary for our troops to carry out rapid reaction missions in the region or anywhere required," Major General Frank Mushyo Kamanzi, the Commandant of Rwanda Military Academy, said.

"The Danes are our partners and appreciate our work; we hope that with such partnerships, we can continue to contribute positively in making the world a better and more peaceful place to live in".

The Eastern Africa Standby Force (EASF) is a constituent organisation of the African Standby Force which was established by the African Union in 2004 with the function of carrying out timely peace and security missions.

Currently, EASF is composed of 10 active member states that include Rwanda, Ethiopia, Kenya, Seychelles, Somalia, Sudan, Uganda Burundi, Comoros and Djibouti.

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