Rwanda fires at Congolese army jet over alleged airspace violation

The Rwandan authorities stated a warplane from the Democratic Republic of Congo violated its airspace on Tuesday as tensions rise between the neighbors over the Democratic Republic of Congo’s risky east.

Kinshasa denied that certainly one of its planes had flown over Rwanda, criticizing Kigali for an “attack” on the jet which it stated amounted to “an act of war”.

- Advertisement -

Ties are already strained between the neighbors, and the Democratic Republic of Congo accuses Rwanda of supporting the M23 insurgent group, which has seized components of Congolese territory in current months.

Kigali denies the accusations, that are supported by UN professionals, the United States, France and Belgium. In flip, it accuses Kinshasa of collaborating with the FDLR – a former Rwandan Hutu insurgent group founded inside the DRC.

“A DR Congo Sukhoi-25 violated Rwandan airspace for the third time,” over the Rubavu district, close to Goma, Rwandan authorities spokesperson Yolande Makolo stated in a declaration.

“Defensive measures were taken,” she stated, including: “Rwanda is asking the DRC to stop this aggression.”

The two preceding instances have been reported in November and December and protested from Kigali.

AFP journalists inside the jap DRC metropolis of Goma heard a loud explosion accompanied by two gunshots because the Congolese aircraft flew over on Tuesday afternoon.

Video posted on social networks confirmed a flash of lightning close to the fighter jet, which landed at Goma airport.

“Deliberate aggression”

A declaration from the Democratic Republic of Congo stated the warplane “was attacked while landing at Goma airport”.

“Rwandan shots were directed at a Congolese aircraft flying within Congolese territory. It did not fly over Rwandan airspace. The plane landed without major material damage,” the declaration added.

Kinshasa stated it considered the incident as a “deliberate act of aggression” geared toward sabotaging peace efforts inside the east.

The declaration stated the authorities “reserves the legitimate right to defend its national territory”.

The combating between Congolese troops and M23, which has made advances on Goma, capital of North Kivu province, has prompted the East African Community (EAC) bloc to deploy a joint regional pressure to end the violence.

Rwanda final week accused the Democratic Republic of Congo of abandoning an settlement geared toward restoring peace.

Talks between the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda inside the Angolan capital Luanda unlocked a ceasefire in November.

But final week the neighbors shifted blame for continued combating.

Scores of armed communities roam the mineral-rich jap Democratic Republic of Congo, many a legacy of two regional wars inside the late twentieth century that claimed thousands and thousands of lives.

The M23 first rose to prominence in 2012 and resumed combating in late 2021 – claiming that Kinshasa had, amongst different {things}, did not maintain a promise to combine them into the military.

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept

Privacy & Cookies Policy