Two Rwandan soldiers who crossed border into DR Congo repatriated

Kigali, Rwanda (PANA) - Two Rwandan soldiers, who "accidentally" crossed into the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) last weekend, have been repatriated, the Defence and Military Spokesperson,  Lt. Col. Innocent Munyengango, said in a statement issued on Tuesday in Kigali.

The Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF) statement said that the incident occurred in the general border area at Karundo Village, Mbungangali Cell, Gisenyi Sector, about 10 meters from Rwanda-DRC border in the northwest.

It said that on 15 April 2018 at 8pm, a Rwandan military officer and one of his men from the 11 Infantry Battalion, were arrested while on patrol, by the soldiers of the Congolese Armed Forces (FARDC) deployed along the border.

According to the Rwandan military, this incident was caused by the lack of clear border demarcation between Rwanda and the DRC.

"It is a regrettable but common cross-border incident as on several occasions we have returned FARDC soldiers who had accidentally crossed to our side," the statement quoted the Rwandan military spokesperson as saying.

In similar related incidents, at least 34 Congolese soldiers have been returned to DRC between 2016 to 2018, the statement said.

Reports said that Rwanda and DR Congo armies, together with the Great Lakes Region Expanded Joint Verification Mechanism, handled the incident amicably.

This repatriation comes a few weeks after soldiers of DR Congo and Rwanda exchanged fire in another incident along the border in Musanze district in northern Rwanda in what has been described as a violation of Rwandan territory in late February this year.
-0- PANA TWA/MA 17April2018

17 april 2018 11:55:03

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