27 November 2012

Rwanda: U.S. State Department Daily Press Briefing: Dr-Congo/Rwanda


Excerpt from the United States Department of State daily press briefing:



QUESTION: What can you tell us about Ambassador Carson's (inaudible)?

MS. NULAND: I didn't get a chance to talk to him myself as I had hoped.

What I can tell you is that he was in Kigali yesterday and delivered a very strong message to the Rwandan Foreign Minister and other government officials about what our expectations are in Congo as we've been discussing, that we want to see Rwanda use its influence, if it has it, with the M23 to get a ceasefire, get a rollback to the July 7th lines, and to participate actively in a conversation among Museveni, Kabila, Kagame, on how to deal with the political and economic grievances in eastern Congo.

We also expressed concerns in those meetings about any Rwandan support for M23. Our understanding is that we are also continuing to ask Rwanda to be active in this, but it is a slog. It's a slog with M23, which has said a lot of good things, but we haven't seen them implemented on the ground. So Assistant Secretary Carson is still out there and continuing his meetings.

QUESTION: His meetings here tomorrow with the AU, what --

MS. NULAND: He'll be back in - yeah, I guess he must be on his way back because he will be here for Chairperson Zuma, who is coming to see the Secretary tomorrow. I would expect the DRC will be on that agenda, as will Mali, as will Somalia.

QUESTION: One of the --

QUESTION: So you said he wanted to - he delivered the message that you want Rwanda to use its influence with the M23 if it has it. Is there some doubt?

MS. NULAND: No. I mean, obviously, it has influence with M23 and there's also been concern, as you know, about materiel support to the M23.

QUESTION: Well, okay, so it's - there is no doubt in the mind of the Administration that Rwanda has influence or - and more with M23?

MS. NULAND: There is no doubt.


QUESTION: I think you said yesterday that there was anticipation that he was going to meet President Kagame when he was in Kigali. Did that meeting fall through, or was that never scheduled, or what happened?

MS. NULAND: That meeting did not happen, I understand, for scheduling reasons, but obviously we remain in contact with President Kagame.

QUESTION: I'm sorry. When you say scheduling reasons, does that mean that Ambassador Carson did - somehow didn't have the time to see him, or that President Kagame decided that he didn't really have any interest in seeing --

MS. NULAND: I don't have --

QUESTION: -- Ambassador Carson, so that his schedule became full?

MS. NULAND: I don't have any details about why the meeting didn't happen.

QUESTION: You also mentioned --


QUESTION: -- that you were asking Rwanda to stop any support - if it has any support if - for the M23. Is there any doubt that it's supporting, militarily, the M23?

MS. NULAND: We have had concerns about Rwandan support for the M23.

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