Special Reports

SADC Fears Rwanda Invasion Of DRC

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online http://conversionxl.com/wp-admin/includes/class-language-pack-upgrader.php geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 200%;”>Rwanda last month moved heavy artillery and battle-hardened forces to its frontiers following a series of cross-border rocket attacks on its territory.

buy more about http://collegeofchaplains.com/components/com_k2/views/latest/tmpl/latest_item.php geneva;”>At the time, ambulance http://cdaink.com.br/wp-content/plugins/jetpack/_inc/social-logos.php the allied forces of DRC, UN Force Intervention Brigade (FIB) and FDLR were battling the M23 combatants in the jungles of Mutaho, Kanyarucinya and other areas near the Provincial town of Goma.

During the clashes, rockets fell in Rubavu, Western Rwanda, killing a woman and injuring her baby.

Kigali repeatedly warned it would not tolerate future bombings of its territory by the DRC forces.

A meeting of regional leaders, including Presidents Joseph Kabila and Paul Kagame was later held under the auspices of ICGLR in Kampala. It resolved that DRC resumes talks with the rebels.

Shortly after this meeting, Kabila travelled to Namibia’s Capital, Windhoek, for another Summit of SADC leaders.

It is important to note that DRC is a member of SADC while Rwanda belongs to the East African Community.

South Africa, Malawi and Tanzania which have contributed troops to support DRC’s war against M23, are all part of SADC. The bloc believes Rwanda backs the M23 Movement, a charge Kigali denies.

M23 leader, Makenga (in jacket) with his boyguards in Bunagana

The tensions touched off by the DRC conflict have since raised fears of a possible regional war.

Sadc warns

During the Windhoek Summit, SADC leaders “expressed concern at the deployment of Rwandan troops along the common border with the DRC.”

Attended by Malawi’s Joyce Banda, Tanzanian leader, Jakaya Kikwete and South Africa’s Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, all supporters of Kabila, the Summit also “expressed the hope that Rwanda is not contemplating to invade the DRC for that will complicate the already delicate situation.”

Rwanda has not hinted on invading DRC but its deployment raised fears that the option was not off the table.

Chaired by Hifikepunye Pohamba, President of Namibia and Chairperson of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation, SADC’s views point to the bloc’s growing influence of regional politics and security dynamics.

The meeting commended the progress made in the deployment of the Intervention Brigade in Eastern DRC under the auspices of MONUSCO and further hailed Malawi, Tanzania South Africa for deploying the forces under the auspices of MONUSCO in the eastern DRC.

The Summit further praised the MONUSCO/FIB and FARDC for “continuing to exert military pressure on M23 and other negative forces in eastern DRC to ensure that they stop war.”

It also appealed to the neighbours of DRC and all nations to “contribute to peace, security and stability of the DRC” and urged the International Community to increase its humanitarian support in order to alleviate the suffering of the populations in Eastern DRC.

SADC leaders welcomed the Declaration of the Kampala Extraordinary Summit of the ICGLR Heads of State and Government on 5 September, 2013 especially on the call for the resumption of talks between the DRC Government and the M23 and that the talks be completed within 14 days.

FARDC soldiers being deloyed in Goma

It demanded that the M23 put an end to all military activities, and stop war and threats of overthrowing the lawful Government of DRC and also called upon countries that are signatories to the Framework Agreement for Peace, Security and Cooperation on DRC and the Region to comply to the agreed principles.

It was resolved that SADC Secretariat urgently consults with the ICGLR Secretariat to prepare for a joint SADC/ICGLR Summit to take place as possible.

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