AU Calls For Dialogue Over Rising Congo-Rwanda Conflicts

AU Calls For Dialogue Over Rising Congo-Rwanda Conflicts (News Central TV)

Senegal President Macky Sall, who chairs the African Union, called for dialogue between the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda on Sunday, as tensions between the two countries rose due to the resurgence of the M23 rebel group.

Congo summoned Rwanda’s ambassador on Saturday and suspended RwandAir flights to Congo in response to Kigali’s alleged support for M23 rebels conducting a military offensive in its eastern borderlands.

Kinshasa has blamed Rwanda for the latest rebel offensive, citing the rebels’ heavy firepower as proof of outside support. Rwanda denies this, claiming that the fighting is an intra-Congolese conflict.

Rwanda’s army also requested the release of two Rwandan soldiers it said were “kidnapped” along its border with Congo.

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“I am seriously concerned by the rising tension between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“I call for calm and dialogue between the two countries, and for the peaceful resolution of the crisis with the support of regional mechanisms and the African Union,” Sall said on Twitter.

Rwanda announced on Saturday that two of its soldiers were being held captive by rebels, accusing the DRC government of supporting those responsible.

Kigali urged Congolese authorities to work for the release of the troops, who were kidnapped earlier this week after what it described as a border attack by DRC forces and Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda rebels (FDLR).

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Earlier on Saturday, the DRC accused Rwanda of supporting another rebel group, M23, which resumed its violent campaign in the volatile eastern Congo last month.

In retaliation, Kinshasa suspended Rwanda’s flag carrier RwandAir’s flights to the DRC and summoned Kigali’s ambassador.

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