Rwanda: Army Explains Rwanda-DR Congo Border Incident, Says Relations Intact

Rwandan troops (file photo).
19 October 2021

The Rwanda Defence Force (RDF) on Tuesday, October 19, released a statement shedding light on the cross-border incident in Rubavu district a day earlier when Rwandan troops crossed into neighboring DR Congo to pursue smugglers.

As noted, on Monday, October 18, Rwandan security forces pursued smugglers who crossed the Rwanda-DR Congo border at Hehu Cell, Bugeshi Sector, Rubavu District.

"Rwandan law enforcement forces unintentionally crossed a few meters into the DRC while pursuing the smugglers who were carrying unidentified packages and believed to have been armed," the RDF statement reads.

"The RDF and FARDC maintain good relations and continue to collaborate on security matters."

Statement on cross-border incident in Rubavu District on 18 October 2021

- Rwanda Defence Force (@RwandaMoD) October 19, 2021

Cooperation in security

Security officials from both countries in the recent past exchanged visits and held meetings in which they agreed on, among others, a plan of action that will help deal with security threats that affect both countries.

The DR Congo is home to militia groups from Rwanda and intelligence officials from both countries regularly share information as the Congolese army continues to battle the militia groups.

DR Congo President Félix Tshisekedi vowed to address a wide range of issues in his country, including war and insecurity and, in his effort to deliver peace, serenity, and calm to eastern DR Congo, the Congolese army battled and pushed out hundreds of anti-Rwandan militias based there, in the past two years.

Hundreds of militia fighters were captured and repatriated to Rwanda. Many others were killed in battle but hundreds of their civilian dependents were returned home, rehabilitated and reintegrated into society.

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