Louise Mushikiwabo, the Rwanda Minister of Foreign Affairs, has said that her country has taken a firm decision never to reciprocate mistreatment against Ugandan citizens in Rwanda in response to recent incidents where Uganda has been arresting, torturing and abusing Rwandan citizens before deporting them.
The minster who was speaking at a press briefing Tuesday morning explained that her country was saddened by the events that happened in the past months and decided to engage in negotiations with Uganda instead of retaliating.
She noted that the Rwandans and Ugandans share a lot in common and it doesn’t make sense to hurt each other.
In January this year, a Rwandan national Emmanuel Cyemayire was grabbed and whisked away by security forces in Mbarara town where he owned a shop.
The incident happened on the same day Uganda’s foreign minister Sam Kutesa was meeting Rwandan President Paul Kagame in Kigali on continuing arrests and disappearances of Rwandan citizens in Uganda, causing tension.
At the close of last year, Fidele Gatsinzi, a Rwandan resident accused Uganda’s Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence [CMI] of illegally arresting and torturing him for almost two weeks.
Gatsinzi says he was arrested on December 9 at a supermarket in Ntinda and detained incommunicado for 12 days.
On September 23, 2017, three Rwandans: James Bayingana, Ali Nsekanabo Lando, Vianney Byaruhanga Nduwamungu were arrested from Bukasa and detained in Mbuya, Kampala, till their release in November.
On December 29, 45 Rwandan nationals, who had reportedly been arrested in Kikagati, Isingiro, crossing from Tanzania into Uganda, were charged in the High Court in Mbarara with terrorism, establishment of a terrorism institution and forgery, after two weeks of detention at the notorious Nalufenya detention centre.
Minister Mushikiwabo says Rwanda made it clear to Uganda that it was not happy in regard to how Rwandans are treated inside Uganda.
Rwanda has not reciprocated the similar treatment to Ugandans in Rwanda.
Discussions to iron out issues are still ongoing.
Relations with France
Mushikiwabo who addressed different diplomatic issues including her country’s relations with France, said the issues are being ironed out.
“President Kagame met with his counterpart Macron on the side-lines of the International Solar Alliance Summit (ISA) that concluded on Sunday in New Delhi – India and Macron showed his willingness to work on the relations,” she noted.
She also confirmed that 28 heads of state have already confirmed that they will attend the extraordinary summit that will take place at the convention centre in Kigali.