President Paul Kagame called out the international community’s continued silence on FDLR for the last three decades and pointed out that conflicts in DR Congo do not benefit anyone but need collective efforts in fixing them. He made the remarks during an interview with France 24, aired on July 8, where he spoke at length about the July 6 Tripartite Summit held in Luanda. During the summit, Presidents Kagame, his DR Congo counterpart Félix-Antoine Tshisekedi, and, Angola’s João Lourenço agreed on the roadmap for the pacification process in the eastern region of DR Congo and ways to de-escalate tensions between Rwanda and DR Congo. The summit was convened by Lourenço in his capacity as the Chair of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR). “I don’t think anyone is interested in tensions, conflicts, or whatever crisis in DR Congo, it is on that backdrop that I am happy we even agreed to meet in Angola under the mediation of President Lourenço. Indeed, we had good discussions from both sides. We are looking forward to making progress,” said President Kagame in an interview with France 24. The Angola talks are not the first of their kind. Rwanda has repeatedly engaged DR Congo specifically on the issue of dismantling the genocidal militia – FDLR. When asked about his assessment of whether the Luanda talks would yield any better results, Kagame said; “I hope so, and that is what I want to see happening. Talking is good; it may not be good enough but it is what you need to start with. The fact that we talk, is good and we can build on that for tangible results. This one in Angola is another step forward.” Rwanda has accused FARDC, the Congolese army, of working with FDLR to shell Rwanda’s territory three times this year. Two Rwandan soldiers patrolling the border were also abducted and later returned to Rwanda following President Lourenço’s intervention. On the other hand, Kinshasa has accused Kigali of supporting the M23 rebel group, which has lately been capturing territories in eastern DR Congo. However, Rwanda vehemently dismissed the accusation and insisted that it is a DR Congo issue that should be addressed domestically. As a result, the Luanda Summit called for an immediate prevention of violations of territorial integrity and ensuring compliance with the commitments made by ICGLR states in this regard. For Kagame, accusations are not his best option; “I don’t think we need to dwell on blame games. The most important thing is, once we have agreed and committed, I think what remains is to ensure that these instructions are followed.” ‘M-23 is not a Rwandan problem’ The ‘roadmap on the pacification process in the eastern DR Congo’ partly instructs fighting parties in DR Congo to ceasefire. When asked about his take on the M23 and the allegations of Rwanda supporting the rebel group, Kagame said, “First, M23 is not a Rwandan problem, these are not Rwandans, and we don’t need them for anything. Second, the history of these M23 people is well known and has been discussed with President Tshisekedi and his government. These are not people who came from Rwanda. How DR Congo makes M23 a Rwandan problem is something I don’t understand.” The roadmap instructs parties to ceasefire, for Kagame, it is an instruction that concerns all parties. “In fighting, there are different parties involved, it is not one party. When talking about a ceasefire, it refers to parties fighting, it is not only M23, it is those they are fighting and those fighting against them (FARDC)”. ‘Silence on FDLR’ Kagame questioned the silence surrounding crimes committed by FDLR. “I am always surprised that when it comes to the conflicts in DR Congo, people are quick to accuse Rwanda but they are deliberately silent on the issues of the FDLR that have been there for over 25 years. They are even silent about the bombing of our territory by the Congolese army, they are silent about the infiltration in 2019 November by the FDLR who entered Rwanda through the northern region and cause mayhem,” said the President. “I am looking forward to that progress. We have talked about it for so many years but why don’t people listen? Have these parties decided that this problem should remain forever and expect that there would be no consequences for the actions of this FDLR carried out against Rwanda, do you think these people are serious?”, Kagame added. Regarding the possibility of war between DRC and Rwanda, the President made it clear that war is not an option he considers easily or carelessly, calling instead for an amicable resolve to the tensions.