Declaration of the Rwandan Civil Society Consultative Framework (CCSCR) on forced repatriation of Rwandan refugees by the Government of Democratic Republic of Congo
Rwandan Civil Society Consultative Framework
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Brussels, 19 November 2018
The Rwandan Civil Society Consultative Framework (CCSCR) has learned with dismay of the deportation to Rwanda of a group of Rwandan refugees who were under the supervision of the Congolese military in Lisala, Equateur Province. On 17 November 2018, the FDLR ex-combatants voluntarily disarmed and stationed with their dependents in Kanyabayonga were attacked and looted by Congolese army FARDC, before being forcibly deported to Rwanda. Many of them fled to the MONUSCO camp but were unable to obtain protection from the UN forces.
The CCSCR also learned that for several weeks, Rwandan refugees in Walungu, Kisangani and Kanyabayonga have been deprived of food and drinking water with the intent to starve them and compel to return to Rwanda.
The CCSCR condemns this forced and brutal repatriation which flattens human rights, in violation of an agreement that the DRC government has signed with the SADC.
As a reminder, this demobilization act was decided in an agreement concluded between the DRC, the MONUSCO, the SADC and the representatives of the Rwandan refugees. The process concerned ex-FDLR combatants who voluntarily laid down their arms, in order to negotiate with the Rwandan Government for the conditions for their peaceful repatriation or relocation to a third country, under the auspices of the SADC.
The Rwandan Civil Society Consultative Framework (CCSCR) appeals to the international community, especially the United Nations, the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the European Union, the diplomatic missions in the DRC and the International Human Rights Organizations, to urgently intervene with the government of the Democratic Republic of Congo, in order to guarantee the protection of Rwandan refugees in this country, among them the ex-combats who voluntarily laid down their arms as well as their dependents, most of whom are women and children who extremely vulnerable.
The Rwandan Civil Society Consultative Framework (CCSCR) is calling for the mobilization of the Rwandan diaspora around the world, to providing various types of material assistance to our compatriots who are in distress in the different cantonment camps in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
On behalf of The Rwandan Civil Society Consultative Framework (CCSCR, in French)
Ambassador Jean Marie NDAGIJIMANA