KINSHASA - The Routine “four plus four” bilateral sessions between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are set to begin in Kinshasa today.
Foreign Affairs Minister Rosemary Museminali confirmed this on phone yesterday, stressing that the meeting’s agenda remains the same; which includes further strengthening the two countries’ bilateral relations and the recent events in eastern DRC.
“We are leaving for Kinshasa and indeed that is part of what our discussions will be about. They (DRC) are going to update us on what is going on presently but before then, we can’t say much until we hear from them,” Museminali said.
Barely a month after the joint Rwanda-DRC military operations (Umoja Wetu) against elements of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) concluded, efforts to sustain the achievements seem to be weakening, according to reports.
Since the end of the operations a month ago, reports have indicated renewed attacks by the FDLR and thousands of civilians are reported to have been displaced.
The rebels are also said to have fired bombs on Rwandan territory Monday night from DRC territory.
The FDLR are an outfit largely composed of perpetrators of the 1994 Genocide against Tutsis.
In a March 10 interview, Museminali underscored the essence of the current Kinshasa bilateral talks, stressing that the Rwandan army’s pullout from DRC mid-February did not signify the end of relations with DRC.
She added that bilateral talks between the two countries would continue to even further strengthen the present good relations, as well as consolidate recent successes against the genocidal force in eastern DRC.
Initiated last year, the “four plus four” bilateral framework brings together four top officials from both countries who discuss the improvement of the two countries’ relations as well as solving the security threat posed by the FDLR.
It is members of the framework who laid ground for the recent joint Rwanda-DRC military plan to do away with the FDLR in Eastern DRC.