Kagame To US: FDLR Must Be Neutralised

help geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 200%;”>Kagame told Russell Feingold, viagra the US Special Envoy for the Great Lakes Region of Africa and the Democratic Republic of the Congo at his Urugwiro Village office on Thursday morning that the genocidal militia must be firmly dealt with “as a matter of priority.”

Kagame’s statement comes against the backdrop of reports that FDLR were restrained from crossing to Rwanda after the defeat of the M23 fighters a couple of months ago.

The M23 had provided a buffer zone between the FDLR militia, which draws its leadership and ideology from perpetrators of the 1994 Rwanda genocide, until Brig Sultai Makenga’s unit was overpowered by a joint force of Tanzania, DRC, South Africa and Malawi troops.

Since then, sources say, FDLR remain at large with plans to attack Rwanda in high gear.

It was also reported that FDLR fighters were used in the ground assault on M23 bases, making it hard for DRC and FIB to turn their guns at their former allies.


During today’s meeting, President Kagame welcomed Feingold and reiterated Rwanda’s support for regional and international peace efforts for the DRC.

The President and US top envoy shared ideas on the next steps in the implementation of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework.

According to a statement from the Rwanda President’s office, the duo agreed on the need for initiatives that complement existing efforts aimed to assist the DRC Government to solve the root causes of recurrent crises.

Feingold will later travel to Paris to meet with government representatives and Great Lakes heads of state this week.

He intends to discuss next steps in the implementation of the Peace, Security, and Cooperation Framework, including the possibility of a regional mediated dialogue aimed at resolving the root causes of conflict in the region.

“The United States stands ready to support the region in launching such a dialogue and advancing the Framework peace process,” the US State Department said Wednesday.


Regional leaders remain split on how to deal with the aftermath of the defeat of M23 rebels in Eastern Congo.

Rwanda believes that FDLR should be neutralized if the militia is not willing to surrender and demobilize.

However, Tanzania wants to see Uganda and Rwanda talk to ADF and FDLR terrorist groups, a suggestion scorned by the Kampala and Kigali.

Uganda and Rwanda are also not willing to see the two terrorist groups rearm, recruit new combatants across their borders.

Another sticky issue is the fate of M23 leaders and their fighters who fled to Uganda and Rwanda.

DRC and US insist the combatants must be prosecuted for war crimes in DRC while Uganda and Rwanda argue that a blanket amnesty would create a fertile ground for reconciliation, peace building and reconstruction efforts in the war-torn country.

It is these political and security developments that have led to the escalating tensions among leaders in the region that US believes there is need for roundtable talks.

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