Rwanda, U.S. Sign Deal to Enhance Military Cooperation

Rwanda and the United States have inked a Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA), deal that will cover the welfare of U.S military personnel while in Rwanda.

Inked Thursday, May 28, the deal, according to a statement from the Rwanda Ministry of Defence "will strengthen the existing good military cooperation between the United States of America and Rwanda."

Vincent Biruta the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation signed on behalf of Rwanda while Peter Vrooman the US Ambassador to Rwanda signed on the behalf of the US.

Speaking about the deal, Biruta said it "will cover U.S personnel and US contractors who may be temporarily present in the territory of the Republic of Rwanda in connection with ship visits, training exercises, humanitarian activities, and other activities as mutually agreed."

The US envoy said: "The signing of this agreement marks another milestone in strengthening the military cooperation between our two countries which has seen a significant rise, exemplified by the signature of the State Partnership Program with the State of Nebraska and its National Guard on December 12th, 2019." The signing ceremony was witnessed by Maj Gen Albert Murasira, the Minister of Defence among other officials.

Rwanda and the US have had an existing military partnership covering different areas.

In 2015, the two nations inked a deal where the United States provides training and other forms of support to the Rwandan National Police forces deployed to United Nations and regional peacekeeping operations around the continent.

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