KIGALI - Following the liquidation of the United Nations Mission in the Sudan (UNMIS), Rwandan peacekeepers who have been serving under the mission have started coming back.
The first batch of the ‘Sixth Khartoum Contingent’ composed of 127 troops arrived yesterday.
They were received at the Kigali International Airport by Brig. Gen. Augustin Turagara, who thanked them for a job well done.
The UNMIS was established in March 2005 with a mandate to ensure that Northern and Southern Sudan comply with the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA).
Speaking to The New Times, the Army and Defence Spokesperson, Col Joseph Nzabamwita, said that, Rwanda was the first country to deploy its peacekeeping troops under the UNMIS.
“This has been a successfully led mission…some of our military officers have been redeployed to the United Nations Mission in the Republic of South Sudan (UNMISS). We are also preparing a deployment of the civil contingent to Southern Sudan,” said Nzabamwita.
He added that the peacekeepers’ task was to support the implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement to perform certain functions related to humanitarian assistance, protection and promotion of human rights among others.
Throughout the mission, the Rwandan troops were charged with protecting the UNMIS headquarters
The mandate of UNMIS ended on July 9, this year, following the independence of Southern Sudan after the much anticipated January referendum.
Before the liquidation of UNMIS, Rwanda maintained a force of 254 peacekeepers.