East Africa: DR Congo Halts Rwanda Flights Over Alleged Help for Rebels

The Democratic Republic of Congo has accused the Rwandan authorities of supporting a resurgent M23 insurgent group close to their shared jap border. In retaliation, RwandAir flights to 3 DRC cities have been grounded.

The Democratic Republic of Congo on Saturday suspended RwandAir flights to the nation, accusing Rwanda’s authorities of supporting the M23 insurgent group that has renewed its offensive close to their shared border.

The federal government in Kinshasa additionally summoned Rwanda’s ambassador to precise its disapproval of its neighbor’s “recidivist perspective.”

The choice was introduced after a rare nationwide safety assembly on Friday chaired by Congolese President Felix Tshisekedi.

RwandAir, the flag provider of Rwanda, stated in an announcement it might cancel “with speedy impact” all flights to Kinshasa, Lubumbashi and Goma.

Why did the Congolese authorities act now?

Kinshasa stated it was responding to a contemporary marketing campaign of violence by M23 within the east of the nation which started final month, after almost a decade of relative calm.

Final week, the group superior as shut as 20 kilometers (12 miles) to the principle jap Congolese metropolis of Goma and briefly captured the military’s largest base within the space.

The Congolese authorities has stated it discovered navy gear that was allegedly equipped by Rwanda, together with testimonies from native residents and troopers suggesting a hyperlink between M23 and its neighbor.

“A warning was made to the Rwandans, whose perspective is more likely to disrupt the peace course of … the place all of the armed teams, apart from the M23, are dedicated to the trail to peace,” Communications Minister Patrick Muyaya stated.

Muyaya stated the federal government had designated M23 a terrorist group and would exclude it from peace talks being held in Kenya with militia teams lively in jap DRC.

Kinshasa additionally accuses Kigali of scuppering the peace course of being mediated by Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, who holds the rotating presidency of the East African Neighborhood group.

Rwanda denies supporting the rebels and relations between the 2 international locations have nosedived over the previous month.

Rwanda on Saturday accused DRC of backing one other insurgent group that captured two of its troopers alongside the shared border this week.

Who’s the M23 group?

The M23 motion is made up of former Congolese military troopers who shaped a insurgent group in 2012.