KIGALI - Rwanda and Germany have vowed to take the newly restored diplomatic and bilateral relation to higher levels for the benefit of the populations of the two countries.
Addressing journalists shortly after hosting a German delegation led by the German Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation, Dark Neibel at Urugwiro Village, President Paul Kagame said that Rwanda and Germany are seeking to strengthen and deepen their relations.
“We expect a solid relationship, friendship and cooperation-and we want it to continue. We will continue deepening it----the problems we had were resolved and what we are looking at is a solid relationship between the two countries, probably more than what it was before,” said the President.
Kagame and the German Minister also discussed potential areas of cooperation; including good governance, strengthening the civil society, energy, education as well as budget support.
On the question of the recent apprehending of FDLR leaders in Germany, the President pointed out that the arrest of Ignace Murwanashyaka and Straton Musoni came late because people had initially not fully understood the problem.
He went on to say that the issue was not whether relations were strained or not, but the dynamics of international justice, which don’t necessarily depend on diplomacy.
Niebel said that Germany is committed to continue its support for development programs in Rwanda, especially through development aid and support for good governance.
“During our talks, we focussed on good governance and democracy and also how important it is to strengthen the civil society, supporting the development of the business community etc.
“We also talked about how good development cooperation is very important in helping developing countries become independent from aid. This is always our goal and we know that it is important for countries to free themselves from aid,” Neibel said.
The German minister was accompanied by the German Ambassador to Rwanda, Elmar Timpe.
According to Foreign Affairs Minister Louise Mushikiwabo, Germany has also pledged to cooperate with Rwanda in the areas of energy and infrastructure development, education and supporting democratic processes.