U-Turn: Rwanda Says Has No Intention Of Expelling Congolese Refugees

U-Turn: Rwanda Says Has No Intention Of Expelling Congolese Refugees

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By Spy Uganda Correspondent

Rwanda said Wednesday that it has no intention of expelling or banning refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Rwandan government spokeswoman Yolande Makolo said the press misinterpreted remarks made recently by President Paul Kagame that Rwanda could not continue to take in Congolese refugees.

“The land of a thousand hills still welcomes people fleeing insecurity, persecution and violence. We call on the international community to take responsibility for finding a durable solution for this forgotten group of refugees from the DRC,” she said.

Kagame remarks, which were made in parliament, had triggered negative reactions, especially on social media.

“The president’s statement starkly illustrates the politicization of refugee rights by the Rwandan government. It comes at a time when Rwanda has just struck an unscrupulous $145 million deal with the UK to take in asylum seekers arriving in the UK through irregular ways,” said Human Rights Watch (HRW).

Relations between DR Congo and Rwanda have reached a low point with the leadership in DR Congo accusing Rwanda of supporting M23 rebels. Rwanda denies supporting the rebels.

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