For Human Rights Watch (HRW) all roads seem to lead to Kigali.
In yet another report detailing numerous cases of abuse of civilians by the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, HRW seeks to once again point fingers at Kigali.
Whatever the historical context, the territory developments are taking place in, successes recorded so far, the international body seems to suffer an incessant obsession of wanting to find fault with Kigali.
The latest attempt is evident in the report entitled; `Congo: Rwandan Rebels Slaughter Over 100 Civilians. Congolese and Rwandan Forces Should Make Protecting Civilians a Priority’.
The report seeks to give the Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF) prominence in the joint operation code named, ‘Umoja Wetu.’
The joint Rwanda-DRC Operations Command Centre in Goma has refuted the report’s claims as being; ‘fabricated, baseless and unfounded.’
The report also suffers from selective amnesia.
While it reports in some parts the atrocities committed by the FDLR, and acknowledges their role during the 1994 Genocide against Tutsis, it seeks to overlook the importance of the joint operation in finally dealing with the menace in the Congo.
Success in the many previous captives who are now finding their way home, these include hundreds of children born in captivity and of course the resumption of diplomatic relations between Congo and Rwanda.
The absurdity of it is that the human rights watchdog, seeks to mitigate the circumstances under which FDLR’s has carried out the latest massacre, the brutal slaughter of over a 100 civilians; negating the historical context in which the FDLR has had to kill innocent Congolese for its survival since the 1994 Genocide.
This, they do by painting an illogical picture of the FDLR having been cornered out of the mere fear of annihilation at the hands of the joint forces, that they have had to kidnap, rape and kill innocent civilians whom it claims were to be used as ‘human shields’ against the advancing joint forces.
The question to ask HRW is for how long has the FDLR been using innocent civilians as human shields, and what has the international community, in particular the UN Peacekeeping Mission, MONUC, done? Zilch!
Taking us to the next point of MONUC’s role; HRW like others is obsessed with the narrative that over glorifies the presence and role of MONUC in the eastern Congo.
Firstly, the success of the joint operation in achieving within days, what MONUC has failed to do close to a decade with dozens of billions of dollars already spent, should expose MONUC as a monumental failure in the Congo and therefore part of the problem.
Secondly, MONUC has structures and spokesperson’s who can speak out for it should it be sidelined in operation ‘Umoja Wetu’.
Through their spokesperson MONUC have already refuted HRW claims. Begging the question, whose agenda does the HRW serve?