News / Africa

US Calls on Rwanda to Denounce Congolese Rebels

The United States says Rwanda should denounce a rebel group in the Democratic Republic of Congo that is accused of using rape and murder in a campaign of terror.  The United Nations says Rwandan defense officials are backing the militia.  Rwanda denies the allegation. 

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says he is concerned about external support for the militia known as M23, which is consolidating its control over areas of the Democratic Republic of Congo's North Kivu province.

A June U.N. report accused Rwandan defense officials of backing M23, prompting the United States and some European countries to suspend military assistance to Kigali.

Rwanda continues to deny those allegations, saying that solving the crisis in eastern Congo will be impossible if, in its words, "the international community continues to define the issue erroneously."

Johnnie Carson, U.S. assistant secretary of State for the Bureau of African Affairs, says it is time for Rwanda to distance itself from the group. "We would clearly like to see, at a very minimum, the government in Kigali denounce the activities of the M23.  They are, after all, a rebel group undermining the stability of a neighboring state," he said.

Rwandan President Paul Kagame says it is "perplexing" the degree to which the international community is focusing on M23 at the expense of what a written statement from the Rwandan government calls "much broader challenges," warning that "externalizing" the crisis "effectively absolves blame from those with primary responsibility."

President Kagame and Congolese President Laurent Kabila met together with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly last week.  Clinton emphasized the need for an "honest and sustained dialogue" that respects territorial integrity.

Assistant Secretary Carson says that Rwanda and Congo must work together. "It is important, absolutely important, for both of those countries and both of those leaders to reestablish confidence and trust which is not there today," he said.

President Kagame says the many armed groups in the Democratic Republic of Congo "are the outcome of a complex, long-standing historical reality.  Therefore, singling out one group out of many is running away from the actual issue" that Rwanda says includes the persecution of ethnic Tutsi.

The State Departments Johnnie Carson says the problems of eastern Congo do not justify backing the M23 rebels. "Yes, President Kabila has to take responsibility for his country.  But yes, the leadership in Rwanda must understand that it is important to be a good neighbor as well," he said.

Human Rights Watch says the United Nations is failing to properly acknowledge Rwanda's continued military support for M23.  As long as that support continues, the human rights group says, Congolese civilians will bear the brunt of the fighting.

You May Like

Ukraine Purges Interior Ministry Leadership With Pro-Russian Ties

Interior Minister Avakov says 91 people 'in positions of leadership' have been fired, including 8 generals found to have links to past pro-Moscow governments More

US Airlines Point to Additional Problems of any Ebola Travel Ban

Airline officials note that even under travel ban, they may not be able to determine where passenger set out from, as there are no direct flights from Liberia, Guinea or Sierra Leone More

Nigerian President to Seek Another Term

Goodluck Jonathan has faced intense criticism for failing to stop Boko Haram militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Hope from: US
October 01, 2012 6:29 PM
Laurent Kabila is dead since 2001; he could not be alive to meet Clinton in 2012!
The current RDC president who met Clinton is called Joseph Kabila!


by: Johnny
October 01, 2012 12:44 AM
More to the point, where are you and William Hague on Zimbabwe. This is the real question that is waiting for an
honest answer and which the UN, finds extremely to act upon.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid