KIGALI – The Ugandan delegation at the Rwanda talks has promised to release all Rwandans held in Kampala without any charges.
It has also promised to formally charge in court all those in custody on any charges related to destabilizing Kampala.
The agreement was reached during the first day of talks held on Monday in Kigali as part of fulfilling the memorandum of understanding aimed at ending tensions between the two countries.
The Ugandan delegation was led by Foreign Affairs minister Sam Kutesa while the Rwandan side was led by Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Amb. Olivier Nduhungirehe.
Rwanda provided a list of people they say are detained in Uganda. Uganda committed to check against the names and release all those that will have no charges to answer, while those with criminal cases to answer will be formally charged.
Both countries have agreed to work on each of the concerns in the next 30 days, after which the Ad Hoc Commission will meet in Kampala to review the progress made.
The talks follow a pact signed by Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni and Paul Kagame of Rwanda last month in Luanda, Angola, to ease the tensions between the two countries.
The talks are expected to also lead to the opening of the Gatuna border which has been closed since February, jeopardizing trade flow between the two nations.
In a media briefing as a communique was shared with the press, Mr Kutesa insisted Uganda does not support or harbor groups that want to destabilize Rwanda. He said Uganda would have no interest in destabilizing Rwanda.
The talks were witnessed by the Minister of External Relations of Angola and the Deputy PM/Minister of Interior of DRC.
The officials are expected to tackle every action point of the memorandum of understanding.
According to the memorandum of understanding, Rwanda and Uganda undertook to respect the sovereignty of each other’s and of the neighboring countries, and refrain from actions conducive to destabilization or subversion in the territory of the other party and neighboring countries, thereby eliminating all factors that may create such perception, as well as that of acts such as the financing, training and infiltration of distabilizing forces
They also agreed to protect and respect the rights and freedoms of the national of the other party residing or transiting in their national territories, in accordance with the law of the country and resume as soon as possible the cross-border activities between both countries, including the movement of persons and goods, for the development and improvement of the lives of their populations.
The two leaders also agreed to promote, with the spirit of pan-Africanism and regional integration, comprehensive cooperation in the fields of politics’ security, defense, trade and cultural exchange, investment, based on complementary and synergies
They also promised to establish an Ad Hoc Commission for the implementation of this memorandum or understanding, headed by the ministers of Foreign Affairs and composed of the Ministers responsible for internal administration and head of Intelligence of both countries.
They will also keep facilitators regularly informed of progress in the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding.