Rwanda-DRC : spying accusations by the DRC presage an escalation of public incitement to violence

Rwanda-DRC : spying accusations by the DRC presage an escalation of public incitement to violence

The office of the Rwandan government spokesperson released a statement saying the detention of two Rwandan citizens in the Congolese capital, Kinshasa, on charges of espionage portends an escalation in incitement to public violence. Rwanda also warns of hate messages targeting Rwandan-speaking populations living in the DRC. INFO SOS Médias Burundi

The two Rwandan nationals namely Dr. Juvenal Nshimiyimana
and Moses Mushabe, both staff members of the African Health Development Organization are held in
Kinshasa since August 30.

According to the press release issued on December 29, they were presented as “spies” to the media during a press briefing held
this Tuesday, December 27, 2022 in Kinshasa by the Congolese Deputy Minister of the Interior, Jean-Claude Molipe Mandongo.

“Just days after the UN panel identified a worrying escalation of violence and ethnic hatred against Rwandans, Rwandophones and the Congolese Tutsi community by Congolese authorities, military officers and leaders of the civil society, the press briefing hosted by the Deputy Minister of the Interior on Tuesday represents a truly alarming escalation in
xenophobia and public incitement to violence”, the statement said.

According to the press release, Rwanda is “deeply concerned” by the fate of its two nationals detained in Kinshasa since August 30, 2022 and who have been presented as “spies” to the media.

unable or unwilling to account for their own failures will seek to fuel ethnic divisions and
blame the outside when there are claims. No one in the Great Lakes region has any illusions as to where
it leads”, the statement continued.

During the press conference, referring to the Rwandan genocide, Congolese officials accused the two Rwandan detainees of “planning to shoot down a plane carrying the Congolese president”, the statement said.

“We urge DRC leaders to defuse the hateful rhetoric and turn away from the path they
seem to choose. The international community, including those who insist on pampering
Congolese leaders, should take note and hold DRC leaders accountable for this escalation”, the document concludes.

Relations between the two countries of the Great Lakes rrgion of Africa have continued to deteriorate since the resurgence of the March 23 movement, the M23.

The former Tutsi rebellion which took up arms again at the end of 2021 accusing Congolese authorities of not having respected its commitments on the reintegration of its fighters is made up of Congolese Tutsis.

Congolese authorities remain convinced that it enjoys the support of Rwanda, which the Rwandan government continues to deny.

After having recovered several localities in the province of North Kivu in the east of the DRC including Bunagana, the border city with Uganda, and threatening to take the city of Goma, capital of North Kivu since mid June , the M23 rebels ceded their posts in Kibumba (Nyiragongo territory) to the regional EAC force a week ago.

The Congolese government recently accused it of having massacred 272 civilians in two villages under its occupation, with the UN putting the death toll at 130.

The M23 denied these allegations calling them “propaganda” aimed at “discrediting us with the population” and called for an independent and impartial investigation.

Rwanda, for its part, has always accused the FARDC (Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo) of “collaborating with the genocidal FDLR” with the aim of “destabilizing its territory”.

But Congolese President Félix Tshisekedi, who on several occasions has accused his Rwandan counterpart Paul Kagame to “support the rebels”, believes that “the FDLR no longer represent a threat to Rwanda” describing them as “a residual force reduced to banditry”.

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