Luanda – The presidents of the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda are expected to meet for talks in Luanda this week amid tense relations between the two neighbours, mediator Angola said on Monday.
The talks between DRC’s Felix Tshisekedi and Rwanda’s Paul Kagame are slated for Wednesday in the southern African nation’s coastal capital, according to a media advisory from the Angolan presidency.
Angolan President Joao Lourenco, a leading mediator in the Great Lakes region, will host the “tripartite” talks.
The summit comes as the vast, mineral-rich DRC struggles to contain dozens of armed groups in the east, many of which are a legacy of two regional wars a quarter-century ago.
The flare-up of heavy fighting has revived decades-old animosities between Kinshasa and Kigali, with the DRC blaming Rwanda for a resurgence of a militia called M23.
Rwanda has repeatedly denied backing the rebels, while both countries have accused each other of carrying out cross-border shelling.
Earlier this month several countries agreed to form a regional force to deploy in the region to help end the violence.
Lourenco in May secured a deal for the release of two Rwandan soldiers that had been captured on DRC territory.
At the time his office said it had reached “an understanding” for the two leaders to meet face-to-face in Luanda.
The UN envoy in the DRC Bintou Keita last week warned fighting could spiral out of control and urged the two belligerents “to resolve their differences through dialogue.”
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