800 more ex-FDLR combatants to return to Rwanda

A group of over 800 ex-combatants presently in the Democratic Republic of Congo is expected to return home to Rwanda in the near future, the Government of Rwanda has said.

According to a statement from the Office of the Government Spokesperson, over 700 ex-combatants, mostly from FDLR – a terrorist group formed by former génocidaires who have been active in the Congo on a mission to distabilise Rwanda – have returned to Rwanda in the last few days.

Another group of ex-combatants is expected to follow, together with their spouses and children, the Government said.

“The returnees include ex-combatants, their spouses and children,” the Government said in the statement.


Upon arriving in Rwanda, the returnees are taken to the Mutobo Demobilisation and Reintegration Centre in Musanze District, where they are given training as well as medical screening.

Children receive all required immunisations while pregnant women undergo all ante-natal care.

The latest wave of returnees is part of an ongoing repatriation effort, Rwanda has already reintegrated more than 10,000 ex-combatants.

Last week, 33 former rebels completed a three-month long training in Mutobo and were reintegrated back into their families and communities.

According to the statement, the ex-combatants have been living in different containment camps across Eastern DR Congo for over the last two years where they were gathered as part of a joint UN and regional efforts to repatriate all rebel groups in the region.

“This repatriation is in line with last year’s decision of regional Heads of State which set the deadline for repatriation without preconditions of the disarmed FDLR combatants and their dependents located in transit camps in eastern DRC by October 20, 2018,” the statement reads in part.

The national demobilisation and reintegration commission will continue to sensitise remaining ex-combatants to voluntary return to Rwanda, the Government stated.