Rwanda:Bretton woods institutions to review Aid

International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank experts have been in Rwanda since late September 2012, sources in Rwandan Ministry of Finance tell AfroAmerica Network. According to the sources, the reasons behind the IMF and World mission in Rwanda are to evaluate the impact of cutting or suspending aid to Rwanda. The mission is expected to return to Washington, DC and then travel to New York to brief UN Security Council next week.

Several Western donors, including the United States, the Netherlands, Great Britain, Sweden, and Germany have suspended or reduced aid to Rwanda following UN Group of Experts On Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) accusing Rwanda of founding, funding, training, arming and supporting congolese rebels known as M-23. The rebels have been accused on numerous serious human rights violations and war crimes, including massacres of civilians, rapes, and looting. The Rwandan government has vehemently denied the accusations but failed to convince both the United Nations Security Council, Western Governments and the DRC government.

Several efforts to get the Rwandan government to admit its support to M23 rebels and to negotiate with the DRC government a diplomatic and political solution have failed. The recent effort by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon to get the two parties together during the roundtable meeting in New York ended in a chaos, when Rwandan President Paul Kagame stormed out of the meeting (see our article; New York: DRC Joseph Kabila Shines; Rwandan Paul Kagame’s Star Wanes of September 30, 2012).

Both IMF and the World Bank are under intense pressure from NGOs involved in the DRC, including the International Crisis Group, Human Rights Watch, Enough Project, Search for Common Ground and Refugees International to use development aid as a leverage against Rwandan government in order to get it to withdraw its troops from DRC and cut its support to M23 rebels.

Sources at the UN have also indicated that other venues to increase pressure on the Rwandan government are under consideration, including having the International Criminal Court (ICC) charge Rwandan leaders of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The Belgian Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders and US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Johnnie Carson have been increasing pressure on Rwanda in official statements in front of the United Nations General Assembly on October 2, 2012.

AfroAmerica Network