URUGWIRO VILLAGE - Dutch State Secretary for European affairs and International Cooperation, Dr. Ben Knapen, yesterday called on President Kagame at Village Urugwiro.
Shortly after meeting the President, the Dutch Minister told reporters that his talks with President Kagame centred on economic development and cooperation.
“I congratulated the President on the progress and determination to reach economic progress and to eradicate corruption,” Knapen said.
“We had a fruitful discussion on economic development and on our cooperation.”
The Dutch Minister added that the pursuit of Genocide fugitives and judicial cooperation also featured in the discussions with the President.
“As you may know, Netherlands and Rwanda signed a letter of intent last year on an extradition treaty and we are still working on it,” Knapen said.
Rwanda’s Foreign Affairs Minister, Louise Mushikiwabo, said that the discussions with Knapen were productive.
“Minister Knapen recognized the great strides Rwanda has made and how we are using Dutch aid effectively to transform the lives of Rwandans,” the minister said.
“We agreed to continue working closely together to enhance understanding of each other’s countries,” she added.
Knapen noted that the Dutch Government understands the need for Rwanda to prevent dissemination of genocide ideology and ethnic hatred.
“We are very much encouraged by the public political dialogues and the review, that is taking place, of the legislation regarding genocide denial and divisionism,” he said.
“Both the President and I agreed that this is work in progress and that it is going in the right direction.”
During his visit, Knapen also met the ministers of Justice, Agriculture and Finance to discuss bilateral issues on development aid and other forms of cooperation.
The Dutch minister, who is on his first trip to Rwanda, visited Dutch-funded projects, as part of his mission to see the results of bilateral cooperation, in particular the impact of Dutch development support.