“Rwanda doesn’t like us. We aren’t afraid of it and we are going to struggle it,” Ekenge stated. “If it desires struggle, it would have struggle,” he stated, including: “Nobody will occupy a single centimeter of our territory.”
An official with the U.N. peacekeeping mission in Congo referred to as MONUSCO stated Wednesday it couldn’t affirm whether or not Rwandan or Ugandan forces helped the M23 insurgent motion seize the important thing Congolese city of Bunagana earlier this week.
“MONUSCO has not been capable of confirm by its personal means these allegations,” Lt. Frederic Harvey, the mission’s chief of liaison with the Congolese military, stated throughout a weekly information convention.
Rwanda and Uganda have denied for years that they help the M23 insurgent motion. Most of the M23 fighters are Congolese ethnic Tutsis and Rwanda’s president is of Rwandan Tutsi descent. M23 has in flip accused Congolese officers of stoking xenophobia.
Rwanda’s authorities, in the meantime, has blamed Congolese forces for injuring a number of civilians in cross-border shelling. On Tuesday, a authorities assertion stated that the Rwandan navy “will proceed to hunt ensures that cross-border assaults on Rwanda’s territory are stopped.”
The M23 rose to prominence a few decade in the past when its fighters seized Goma, the most important metropolis in Congo’s east which sits alongside the border with Rwanda. The rebels have been pushed out of Goma and, after a peace deal, a lot of M23′s fighters have been built-in into Congo’s nationwide navy.
However earlier this yr the rebels made a comeback, launching an offensive towards Congo’s navy after saying the federal government had didn’t dwell as much as its decade-long guarantees.
On Wednesday, demonstrators in Goma referred to as on the worldwide group to intervene amid rising tensions.
“We can’t settle for being attacked by neighboring international locations,” stated Jack Sinzahera, who was amongst these protesting in Goma. “That’s why at the moment there’s a common mobilization to say no to the aggression of Rwanda and Uganda in our nation.”
The demonstration was peaceable although police later fired tear gasoline on some protesters who tried to march to the border put up separating Congo from Rwanda.
Relations between Rwanda and Congo have been fraught for many years. Rwanda alleges that Congo gave refuge to the ethnic Hutus who carried out the 1994 Rwandan genocide that killed no less than 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and reasonable Hutus. The 2 international locations have lengthy accused one another of supporting varied rival armed teams.
Related Press author Jean-Yves Kamale in Kinshasa, Congo contributed.