African Union to back Rwanda to protest UN “Genocide” report in New York
Kigali – The African Union is tipped to use the 65th Session of the United Nations General Assembly to force amendments on the report that accuses Rwanda of alleged Genocide in DR Congo.
The session that gets under way on Monday in New York has been rocked by the leaking of the report linking Rwanda troops to genocide in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The UN was left with egg on its face after the contents of the 600-page draft report was leaked, prompting the secretary-general Ban Ki-moon to fly to Rwanda to ease tensions.
Former and current diplomats told the Kenyan newspaper ‘Sunday Nation’ that the African Union will seek changes to the document as a show of solidarity with Rwanda which has become a major player on the continent.
Another former ambassador and now university don, Prof Frank Matanga, says the leak has exposed the UN and left it with no option but to cause the amendments as demanded by Rwanda.
The recognition of Rwanda’s growing importance in African affairs, Prof Kikaya added, should provide a good starting point to mobilise the AU block to demand tighter structures to forestall any future leaks.
“The burden is on Rwanda’s diplomatic corps to lobby the African caucus to give its position on this matter,” he told the Kenyan daily.
Rwanda’s growing importance in the continent since the genocide in 1994 can be seen in its peace efforts in the region.
It currently has 3300 peacekeeping force and 86 police serving with a joint UN and African Union force (Unamid) in the troubled western Sudanese region of Darfur. It is led by Rwandan Lt Gen Patrick Nyamyumba.
Another 256 troops serve with the UN Mission in Sudan (Unmis), which is supporting the implementation of a peace deal between north and south.
“Rwanda was the first country to send troops to a very treacherous place to monitor implementation of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement. It therefore pioneered the African-based force,” Prof Kikaya pointed out.
Instead of bashing Rwanda, the UN should be thanking the country for evolving African-based peace keeping in the continent, added Prof Kikaya.
The fact that the report also names Uganda, Zimbabwe, Angola and Burundi, it creates sympathy among other African leaders to fall behind their colleagues, according to diplomats.
President Kagame will also meet with UN Secretary General Ban ki-moon and other top UN officials as part of Rwanda’s offensive against the report due to be released on October 01.