Personnel from the Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF) and Rwanda National Police, serving under the United Nations Peacekeeping Mission in Sudan (UNMIS), will be re-assigned following the UN Security Council decision to withdraw peacekeepers in the volatile border regions by August 31.
The unanimous decision by the Security Council follows the independence of South Sudan.
The six-year-old UNMIS was comprised of 10,000 peacekeepers from different countries.
In an interview with Lt. Col Joseph Nzabamwita, the new Defence Spokesperson, RDF peacekeepers have been given the mandate to facilitate the withdrawal of the UNMIS forces.
“The RDF is involved in supporting the United Nations Security Council to wind up UNMIS,” Lt. Col Nzabamwita said.
“This confirms the confidence the UN has in our forces and the professionalism with which they operate.”
According to the Police Spokesperson, Supt. Theos Badege, Rwanda had 34 police officers under UNMIS and most of them will be redeployed in the contested border region of Abyei.
“We have 34 officers under UNMIS but so far, what we know is that a big number of them will be redeployed in Abyei and others taken to South Sudan,” he said.
The resolution, adopted on Monday, calls for the peacekeepers to have completed withdrawal by August 31. However. several countries have expressed worries over the expedited withdrawals.