News / Africa

DRC Hopeful of M23 Rebels’ Extradition

Congo Rebels accuses the Congolese government of refusing to negotiate at recently-reconvened peace talks, (File photo).
Congo Rebels accuses the Congolese government of refusing to negotiate at recently-reconvened peace talks, (File photo).
Peter Clottey
The Democratic Republic of the Congo’s information minister says the government in Kinshasa enjoys good relations with Rwanda in spite of the diplomatic challenges between the two neighboring countries.

Lambert Mende says Kigali has assured the DRC as well as the international community of cooperation after his government issued international warrants for four former leaders of the M23 rebel group believed to be in Rwanda.

“They were already wanted here in DRC when they fought against the government in North Kivu. Since we learned from a communique from the Rwanda government that they were receiving asylum, we sent a warrant of arrest that was sent by diplomatic [channels] to our Rwanda government counterpart to have the four sent back here in Congo so that they [can appear] before the court,” said Mende.

The M23 leaders wanted for extradition include M23 Jean-Marie Runiga and military commanders Baudouin Ngaruye, Eric Badege and Innocent Zimurinda.  Kinshasa has accused them of committing crimes against humanity, war crimes, torture and other offenses.

Relations between the Central African neighbors have been strained by DRC accusations that Kigali has been supporting the rebels. Rwanda denies the charge.

Some analysts say Kigali might not enforce the DRC arrest warrants due to the diplomatic spat between the two countries. Mende acknowledged the tensions, but said Rwanda will extradite the M23 rebels due to a recently signed agreement between countries of the Great Lakes region – including Rwanda and the DRC -- in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.  The signatories swore to eradicate rebel groups in North Kivu province.

“We received [a] statement from the Rwanda government [saying] they are going to cooperate,” said Mende.  “We also have a judiciary agreement with Rwanda. We have not yet received any response from them, but we are waiting with [heightened] interest …. because [it] reiterates its commitment to cooperate with the provision of the agreement. And we have no reason to doubt that they will act accordingly.”

Mende denies accusations that soldiers from the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo (FARDC) attacked unarmed civilians following the latest clashes with the M23 rebels.

“Not a single bullet from FARDC targeted civilians in Rumangabo,” said Mende. “We targeted the headquarters of M23, where [rebel] elements were meeting with the Rwandese Defense Forces to plan and to launch an attack against our troops, and we destroyed their depot of ammunitions. While escaping from Rumangabo barracks, these M23 and Rwanda alliance fired on civilians.”
Clottey interview with Lambert Mende, DRC information minister
Clottey interview with Lambert Mende, DRC information minister i
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

You May Like

Turkish Public Fears Jihadists More Than Kurds

Turkey facing twin threats of terrorism by Islamic State and PKK Kurdish separatists, says President Erdogan’s ruling AK Party More

Video One Year After Massacre, Iraq’s Yazidis a Broken People

Minority community still recovering from devastating assault by IS militants which spurred massive outrage More

‘Malvertisements’ Undermine Internet Trust

Hackers increasingly prey on users' trust of major websites to delivery malicious software More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Mulumba Paul
July 30, 2013 12:43 PM
Shame on Rwanda for their involvement in bringing instability in the region. DRC instability will not benefit Rwanda and Ouganda. And Rwanda or Uganda will never be able to claim DRC territory as their own and rule them. These are some facts that Rwanda and Uganda should acknowledge and stop their strategic blunders in DRC.
In Response

by: Mulumba Paul
August 06, 2013 12:28 PM
TO BOBOTO from GOMA DRC: All the problems of the DRC do not give Rwanda or Uganda teh rights to invade part of Congo. Sure governance in DRC needs improvement. How about governance in YOUR country of Rwanda? Where is Victoire Ingabire Umuhoza that your leader Kagame has unlawfully imprisoned for so long? Is that good governance? Should DRC also invade Rwanda due to its issues?
Regarding rebels in Katanga, I will not be surprise outside forces are in mix in the rush to getting their part of Congo minerals. Regarding FDLR, why isnt your president Kagame negotiating with them as he recommend sthe DRC negotiate with the M23. The time for a blind support to the Rwanda lobby is over! Rwanda and its proxies the M23 cannot continue to loot, rape and murder indefinitely in the DRC. Kagame and Museveni strategic blunders in the great lakes region are coming to light. A free trade area in the region is probably the best answer to their needs of economic growth in the region. Arming rebel groups is not the answer. By the way DRC is not a jungle, otherwise the decent folks at the WorldBank will not invest $1 billion in in the DRC...Please stop your misinformation on the DRC!
In Response

by: BOBOTO from: GOMA DRC
July 31, 2013 2:32 AM
You still need information on the DRC realities. That country is characterized by a desorganization since several years.It's politicians have no leadership and patriotism. The Congolese misere is never their concern. Their concern is just getting money and enjoy their short term pleasure. Do never condemn Rwanda and Uganda for what is happening in that jungle DRC, are the rebels harassing KATANGA trained in any neighboring country?

Are FDLR who are only standing for abuses including the sexual atrocity done against ladies and young girls supported by RWANDA and UGANDA? Do you know why the FDLR are protect in DRC despite the atrocities they are committing? It is because they are the best buyers of the weapons from UN Peace keeping force against the precious minerals. No secret under the sun.

by: emmanuel from: Kenya
July 29, 2013 12:12 PM
This really is politic! How can Mende say that Congo is in good relationship with Rwanda while recognizing that Rwanda Defence Force is supporting M23? How Rwanda can arrest those soldiers whilist it is preparing an attack against Goma? Let us wait and see. But I know that Kagame, he will remain stuborn untill... Let's wait and see.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Communityi
X
Sharon Behn
August 03, 2015 2:23 PM
A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs