Rwanda President Kagame, DRC’s Tshisekedi Speak By Phone Amid High Tensions

Rwanda President Kagame, DRC’s Tshisekedi Speak By Phone Amid High Tensions

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By Spy Uganda

Rwandan President Paul Kagame held phone conversations Monday with his Congolese counterpart Felix Tshisekedi along with African Union chairman Macky Sall aimed at easing tensions between Kigali and Kinshasa.

The talks came on the back of days of tensions over allegations that Rwanda is backing M23 rebels of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in renewed fighting in eastern North Kivu province.

Rwanda has denied the allegations.

“I thank Presidents Felix Tshisekedi and Paul Kagame for our telephone talks yesterday and today [Monday] in the quest for a peaceful solution to the dispute between the DRC and Rwanda,” Sall, who is also Senegal’s president, said in a tweet.

Sall also confirmed that further discussions will take place within the framework of the regional International Conference on the Great Lakes Region.

Over the past few days, raging fighting between the DR Congo army and M23 rebels in North Kivu displaced more than 72,000 people, according to the UN refugee agency.

Sall has called for “calm and dialogue” between Rwanda and DR Congo.

Last Saturday, DR Congo suspended flights by Rwanda’s national carrier RwandAir to the country amid the escalating tensions.

The Rwandan army said two of its soldiers were recently kidnapped while on patrol and accused DR Congo armed forces of shelling in the border district.

But the DR Congo army claimed the soldiers were captured in a botched attack on its military detachment in the east.

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