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Uganda, Rwanda Hold Talks On Security Concerns, Reopening Border

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BLOOMBERG 21 FEB 2020

Ugandan and Rwandan leaders plan to reopen their busiest border, probably in April, after probing security allegations that have risked sparking a new wave of unrest in the region.

Kampala will within one month verify allegations by Kigali that there are anti-Rwanda forces operating from Uganda, according to a statement released following a presidential summit at the border. Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni and his Rwandan counterpart Paul Kagame met for the fourth time on the matter, along with convener, Angolan President Joao Lourenco. President Felix Tshisekedi of neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo attended the meeting.

Following the verification, the leaders plan to meet within 15 days “for a solemn reopening of borders and subsequent normalization of the relations between the two countries,” according to the statement posted on Twitter by Museveni’s spokesperson.

Uganda and Rwanda also signed an extradition treaty for “cases of justice including those related to alleged subversive activities.”

Africa’s Great Lakes countries, including Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Congo, are at risk of worsening violence, according to the International Crisis Group. The leaders have blamed each other for backing proxy rebels against one another’s country, according to a report by the Brussels-based group.

Kagame’s administration last February unilaterally closed a border with Uganda and discouraged its citizens from traveling to its northern neighbor or risk being arrested. That was amid concern in Kampala that Rwandan spies had infiltrated Kampala’s security ranks to eliminate rebels feared to be recruiting from refugee camps in Uganda.

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