Rwanda asks regional observers to investigate DR Congo shelling

Rwanda has asked the Expanded Joint Verification Mechanism (EJVM), a mechanism of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), to investigate circumstances under which a rocket was this week fired on its territory from the neighbouring DR Congo.
Members of the Expanded Joint Verification Mechanism team investigating shelling from the DRC in 2013.
Members of the Expanded Joint Verification Mechanism team investigating shelling from the DRC in 2013.

Rwanda has asked the Expanded Joint Verification Mechanism (EJVM), a mechanism of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), to investigate circumstances under which a rocket was this week fired on its territory from the neighbouring DR Congo.

The request followed an incident on Tuesday in which the DR Congo Armed Forces (FARDC) reportedly fired a rocket projectile on the Rwanda territory in Rubavu District.

In a statement issued late Wednesday, Defence and Military Spokesperson, Brig Gen Joseph Nzabamwita said that firing took place at around 19:15 local time on Tuesday.

“The FARDC forces deployed at Buhumba Groupement, Bukumu Chefferie, Nyiragongo Zone, fired a launcher 7 rocket projectile on Rwandan territory, at Bereshi village, Hehu cell, Bugeshi Sector in Rubavu District,” he said in the statement.

There were no casualties.

“Rwanda has made a formal request to the EJVM to investigate the violation of Rwanda's territorial integrity, and a threat to the safety of the population… We call upon the population to remain calm as we establish the motive, in conjunction with EJVM.”

In 2013, FARDC fired over 60 bombs and rockets on the Rwandan territory, killing several civilians and injuring a dozen others, including women and children.

As a result, in August last year, Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF) moved heavy arsenal close to the border with DR Congo, but the shelling was halted.

editorial@newtimes.co.rw

 

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