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Uganda’s plans to blackmail Kigali with release of nine Rwandans haven’t worked; so Kampala cranks up the propaganda

By Alex Muhumuza

The 9 released Rwandans on arrival in Rwanda via Gatuna border.

In a continuous drive to dupe the public with its anti-Rwanda propaganda, ChimpReports, a Uganda Military Intelligence (CMI) sponsored tool, as usual is finding ways to try to tarnish the image of Rwanda. This is obvious in an article published Wednesday this week under the headline: “Kagame, Museveni to meet in Tanzania as the prospect of Rwanda-Uganda war remains high”.

They are weaving a fiction of supposed Rwandan belligerence when facts show all provocations that have led to the current strained relations have come from Uganda.

Chimpreports – which is funded directly from the offices of Col. CK Asiimwe, CMI’s counterterrorism chief – hoodwinks its readers with pretense at “informing” – that the presidents of Rwanda and Uganda will meet in Arusha.

Read: The duplicity in Ugandan ruler’s speech on alleged “closed borders”.

After stating the obvious, the website proceeds to serve up several fictions, first engaging in their habitual slander of innocent Rwandans with claims that the nine recently released detainees were “military agents”. This slander flies in the face of facts. These were civilian businessmen that Ugandan security agents arbitrarily arrested at different times on charges like “espionage”, “illegal weapons possession” or “kidnap”.

But despite imprisoning them in horrific conditions including torture that left them in bad physical condition, and psychologically traumatized Ugandan military prosecutors could not prove a single charge against them. Throughout the time they were detained, their lawyers demonstrated their innocence in front of media cameras time and again.

In its continuous slanders against these abused Rwandan citizens, who even were robbed of their money and other personal property by their abductors, Chimpreports shows the same impunity as its CMI masters.

Read: Kampala misinformation website Softpower will deceive none with its projection, observers

The website clearly thinks people will forget that when Ugandan Foreign Minister Sam Kutesa delivered the nine men to the Rwandan High Commissioner in Kampala, it supposedly was acting in the spirit of the Angola MoU. But after releasing the nine men, Uganda did nothing further to fulfill its MoU obligations. There are hundreds of Rwandans still languishing in Ugandan prisons and intelligence agency dungeons.

Why is Uganda keeping them?, people have been asking.

The answer, it has become apparent, is that Kampala had no intension of releasing all the Rwandans. It merely intended to use the nine to blackmail Rwanda, with calls to “open the border”! After Rwanda said things will not work like that, Kampala now is cranking up the misinformation and smears.

The Ugandan regime is very dismayed that Rwanda is demanding it fulfill all the obligations of the MoU, on which none other than Uganda’s own president upended his signature. The obligations are clear: Uganda should either release all the Rwandan citizens it has illegally detained, or subject them to fair, transparent trials.

Secondly Kampala should take steps to dismantle negative, anti-Rwanda groups in Uganda such as RNC, FDLR and others.

It is doing none of these things. It is only busy publicizing the release of nine prisoners – people that in the first place were detained for nothing and suffered torture – to pretend that it is fulfilling the MoU!

In its Wednesday article, Chimpreports goes on to concoct a fiction to paint supposed Rwandan military belligerence with claims like: “Rwanda has deployed Special Forces not only on hills overlooking Uganda but also in South Kivu and North Kivu in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo

“This deployment stretching across Uganda’s entire eastern border remains a huge concern to Kampala considering the tense relations between the two countries”.

This raises the question: who appoints Ugandan propaganda tools to speak on matters of concern to Congolese? Supposing “Rwanda has deployed forces in Congo”, why isn’t Kinshasa the one complaining? Why are the alarmist noises coming from Kampala?

Read: As FDLR cheerleader, Chimpreports can only spin fictions

Chimpreports as usual merely hopes it can publish assertions like that, backed with no logic, and no one will notice.

The CMI-sponsored tool of misinformation even desperately tries to drag the Rwandan peacekeeping mission in South Sudan with long-discredited lies – such as that Kigali asked the Government of South Sudan to allow Rwandan peacekeepers stationed there to be deployed on the border with Uganda.”

Astute analysts point out these are the kind of wild fictions Kampala hopes it can extort Rwanda with: “to make Rwanda open borders!”,

But Rwanda won’t cave in to any blackmail, as it has demonstrated.

It is just sticking to the facts. Ugandans and every other person can freely enter Rwanda through gazetted crossings, as Kigali authorities have said many times. So there is no “closed border”. The only people not crossing to the other side are Rwandans. They have heeded their government’s advisory to stop, as their safety could not be guaranteed once in Uganda.

That’s not Uganda’s main concern with their daily, false complaint that the “border is closed”. Their main desire is for Rwanda to re-open her market to Ugandan commerce and trade, which Kigali has embargoed.

As Kigali says: you cannot have free movement of goods without free movement of people.

Meantime, our writer Alain Mucyo reports, Chimpreports was at it again this very week with another article headlined: “Nearly 200 Killed In Eastern Congo Last Month – Rights Group” which was posted on January 29.

In the article, the website which operates on the whims of the Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI), labors to paint a gloomy picture of an otherwise successful operation by the DR Congo military.

First, they quote some obscure reports to indicate that the operation has led to killing of innocent civilians, with no evidence. In fact the decisive operation, which was launched mid-last year against all negative forces operating mainly in the eastern part of DRC, has seen scores of militiamen, including several top RNC, FDLR, RUD Urunana or FLN commanders killed.

Read: RUD-Urunana top commander killed in DRC

According to the Congolese, especially those in the east, the recent gains by their military against terror groups gives them hope for a peace that they have long yearned for, and that they were denied so long by the illegal armed groups.

Whatever the falsehoods of Ugandan misinformation websites, Congolese are just heaving a big sigh of relief that the rebel groups are getting clobbered.

Those reading Ugandan propaganda such as Chimpreports have been asking, if DRC is getting rid of rebels and other illegal armed groups, who is Chimpreports to question how it is being done?

“Some of these groups like RNC, FDLR and RUD Urunana are close to home for Chimpreports to have provided some depth to them because of the overwhelming evidence available that they get support from Uganda, but their days are numbered!” said another commentator.

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