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Rwanda-Chad: What did Kagame write in his letter to Déby?

By Jeune Afrique
Posted on Monday, 23 August 2021 14:44

Rwandan President Paul Kagame looks on as he attends a joint news conference with French President Emmanuel Macron at the Presidential Palace in Kigali, Rwanda May 27, 2021. REUTERS/Jean Bizimana

At Chad's presidential palace in N'Djamena on 15 August, Mahamat Idriss Déby received Vincent Biruta -the Rwandan minister of foreign affairs. Biruta was tasked with delivering a personal message from Rwanda's head of state Paul Kagame to the Chadian transitional president. What was in the letter?

Three main areas were addressed.

First, Kagame told his counterpart that he wanted to deepen bilateral relations between Kigali and N’Djamena on all levels and especially in economic matters. It’s important to note that Rwanda has two dedicated vectors for this: Crystal Ventures – an investment fund and the financial arm of the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF, in power) – and Rwandair, the national carrier.

Above all, Kagame hopes to collaborate more frequently with the Chadian authorities on the persistent security crisis in the Central African Republic.

Kigali is militarily invested there – bilaterally and within the UN mission – while N’Djamena has an obvious interest in securing its border with the southern neighbour.

Finally, in a broader sense, Kagame hopes to engage with Déby on the response of African countries to the terrorist threat, particularly in Central and Southern Africa. Rwanda recently sent more troops to Mozambique to counter the advance of jihadists.

In September, Chad will hold the rotating chairmanship of the African Union’s Peace and Security Council.

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