KIGALI - THE Minister of Defence Gen. James Kabarebe, yesterday, met the Chinese Ambassador to Rwanda, Sun Shuzhong.
The Ambassador revealed that the two parties discussed military cooperation adding that the forces of the two countries maintain good levels of cooperation in terms of training and logistics.
“You know we have friendly relations between China and Rwanda, including our military sides, but this time I am here to talk about some future plans between the two armies,” Shuzhong told journalists.
“We have many programmes between China and Rwanda that are coming. We have training programmes coming up where Rwandans soldiers go to China for training. I think it’s very important for all of us to know about the military and the development of both sides.”
The Ambassador noted that China is not only focussing on involving itself in economic development in Africa, but also security matters such as peacekeeping on the African continent.
“The Chinese government supports capacity building plans for the Rwandan army. It is very important for us to have this kind of cooperation,” Shuzhong said.
According to the Defence Spokesperson, Lt. Col. Jill Rutaremara, the Chinese envoy also delivered an invitation to the Rwandan Defence Minister from his Chinese counterpart to visit with a delegation on a cooperation and fact-finding mission.
“We have always had good relations with China, so that visit will be aimed at discussing ways of strengthening the existing cooperation. For instance, this year, China will train 21 Rwandan officers,” Rutaremara said.
“That’s not all, most of the equipment we use on the peacekeeping mission is obtained from China as well as other non-military equipment like emergency boats on L. Kivu and the speed boats used to counter smuggling.”