The Uganda-Rwanda borders were closed on February 27, 2019. At the time, Rwandan President, Paul Kagame accused Ugandan authorities of spying on Rwanda, abducting Rwandan citizens and locking them up in non-designated areas.
The Hills in Rwanda across the border with Uganda
The Rwandan government
has finally agreed to re-open its border with Uganda, three years after its
borders were closed on February 27, 2019.
At the time, Rwandan President, Paul Kagame accused Ugandan
authorities of spying on Rwanda, abducting Rwandan citizens and locking them up in non-designated
areas, as well as hosting and facilitating dissidents who have declared war on the Kigali administration.
Rwanda then issued a travel advisory to its nationals against travelling to Uganda,
saying their safety was not guaranteed. But Rwanda has now announced that the border will be reopened on January 31, according to a statement that has been Tweeted by State media house Rwanda Broadcasting Agency (RBA) and Ministry of
Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, this morning.
The statement indicates that the promise to reopen follows the visit by Lieutenant
General Muhoozi Kainerugaba, Uganda’s Senior Presidential Adviser on Special
Operations and Commander Land Forces to Kigali where they held cordial and
in-depth discussions about how to improve bilateral relations between the two
“Following the visit
to Rwanda of Lt Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba, Senior Presidential Adviser on Special
Operations and Commander Land Forces of the Uganda People's Defence Forces
(UPDF) on January 22, 2022, the government of Rwanda has taken note that there
is a process to solve issues raised by Rwanda, as well as commitments made by
the Government of Uganda to address remaining obstacles.
Before Muhoozi's visit to Rwanda, Uganda’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Adonia Ayebare had also made a trip to Kigali, in one of the efforts to mend the broken
relations. Earlier, President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda and Paul Kagame of Rwanda had signed an agreement in Angola to ease tensions between the two neighbouring countries.
"In this regard and in
line with the communique of the 4th Quadripartite Summit held at Gatuna/Katuna
on February 21, 2020, the Government of Rwanda wishes to inform the public that
the Gatuna border post between Rwanda and Uganda will be reopened from January
31, 2022,” the statement reads.
The statement also
indicates that health authorities between the two countries will work together
to put necessary measures to facilitate movement in the context of
COVID19. “As is the case for other land border posts in the
country, health authorities of Rwanda and Uganda will work together to put in
place necessary measures to facilitate movement in the context of Covid-19,” the
Relations between the
countries also soured after an investigation last year found that Rwanda used
Israeli Pegasus spying software to hack into the phones of Uganda's Prime
Minister and the Foreign Affairs Minister, among others. The impasse between
the two countries suffocated businesses in the sub-counties located along the
border while leading to an increase in smuggling. As a result, many people both
Rwandan and Ugandan nationals have been shot to death and others injured by