Concern As Rwandan Refugees Settle In DRC Top story

1950 Views Kabale, Western Region, Uganda

In short
Government in the Democratic Republic of Congo—DRC has expressed concern over hundreds of Kinyarwanda-speaking refugees entering and settling on its territory.

Government in the Democratic Republic of Congo—DRC has expressed concern over hundreds of Kinyarwanda speaking refugees entering and settling on its territory.
 
The DRC now wants Rwanda and the United Nations High Commission for Refugees—UNHCR to explain circumstances under which the refugees are crossing the border from Rwanda.
 
DRC spokesperson Lambert Mende told Uganda Radio Network on Thursday that the government is concerned over the manner in which the refugees are entering the country through an area controlled by the M23 rebels.
 
Mende says DRC asked UNHCR and Rwanda to explain the arrival of the refugees who are now in Rutshuru and Jomba, North Kivu province. Mende says the Kinshasa government was not informed of the movement, in accordance with the tripartite agreement concluded in 2010 between the DRC, Rwanda and the UNHCR on the repatriation of refugees.
 
The refugees say they are Congolese who had fled into Rwanda and Uganda during the war. DRC has virtually been at war since October 1996 when rebels headed by Laurent Desire Kabila and backed by Rwanda and Uganda launched a rebellion that toppled the government of Mobutu Sese Seko in May 1997.
 
The remarks by the Congolese government spokesperson come at a time when rumours are circulating that Rwanda was sending its citizens expelled from Tanzania to Eastern DRC after failing to get land where to have them resettled.
 
Amani Kabasha, the M23 spokesperson says it is unfortunate that the Congolese government is complaining over the return of its citizens who had fled insecurity. He says the returnees have used the advantage of the existing peace in the areas controlled by the M23 rebels to return to their homes.
 
Our reporter was unable to get a comment from the Kigali government over the matter.
M23 have been fighting the DRC government since April 2012, with both UN and Kinshasa accusing Rwanda of directly supporting the rebels

 

About the author

Anthony Kushaba
For Anthony Kushaba, journalism is not just a job; it is a calling. Kushaba believes journalism is one of the few platforms where the views of the oppressed and margainalised can be heard. This is what his journalism aims to do: bring to light untold stories.

Kushaba is the Mbarara region URN bureau chief. Mitooma, Ntungamo, Bushenyi, Sheema, Isingiro, and Kiruhura districts fall under his docket. Kushaba has been a URN staff member since 2012.

Kushaba is a journalism graduate from Uganda Christian University Study Centre at Bishop Barham College in Kabale. Before joining URN, Kushaba worked with Voice of Kigezi (2008), Bushenyi FM (2010) and later on to Voice of Muhabura.

Kushaba's journalism interests centre on conflict, peace and electoral reporting. Kushaba occasionally writes on tourism, health, religion and education. He describes himself as highly driven and will pursue a tip until it yields a story.