Zim, Rwanda commit to defence, security collaboration

16 Nov, 2021 - 00:11 0 Views
Zim, Rwanda commit to defence, security collaboration Defence and War Veterans Affairs Minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri speaks to her Rwandan counterpart Major General Albert Murasira soon after a meeting in Harare yesterday.

The Herald

Columbus MabikaHerald Reporter

Zimbabwe and Rwanda yesterday committed to work on modalities that will intensify defence and security collaboration to address both the traditional and non-traditional threats affecting the African continent.

The commitment came out during a courtesy call by visiting Rwandan Minister of Defence, Major General Albert Murasira on his counterpart, Minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri at Defence House in Harare yesterday.

The visit by Maj-Gen Murasira followed Minister Muchinguri-Kashiri’s visit to Kigali, Rwanda, in August to explore possible avenues for cooperation.

 The two ministers discussed ways of resuscitating a Defence Memorandum of Understanding signed between the two nations in 1997 and the issue of insurgency in Mozambique.

Said Minister Muchinguri-Kashiri: “They (Rwanda) want to exchange information on what is happening in Mozambique particularly in Cabo Delgado. So we want to take advantage of the bilateral relations. We exchanged notes and we are now finding ways on how we can deal with insurgents in Mozambique since we are going to be deploying forces.

“We are the region that is housing Mozambique, which is dear to our hearts because it’s an economic hub for all the countries in the region. Countries rely on Mozambique for exporting minerals, for exporting technology, and exporting food. We also get our oil through Mozambique.

 “You may recall I travelled to Rwanda at the invitation of my counterpart for us to explore ways which we can strengthen the Memorandum of Understanding we signed in 1997. That was the first meeting we had held after almost 15 years.”

Minister Muchinguri-Kashiri said her visit opened doors for other economic ministries to visit Rwanda to explore further areas of cooperation. Maj-Gen Murasira said defence collaboration was the way to go in solving the problems faced by the region.

 “I came here at the invitation of the Minister of Defence and War Veterans Affairs (Minister Muchinguri-Kashiri). We were discussing on our existing Defence Cooperation which started since 1997. 

“We want to strengthen it to the next level as we endeavour to solve some security problems in our region. In our individual countries, we want to exchange information on different aspects in the region including the Mozambican issue,” he said. 

Yesterday morning, Maj-Gen Murasira had toured the National Heroes’ Acre where he laid a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, before receiving a narration of the country’s liberation war history and the significance of the murals at the shrine.

Maj-Gen Murasira also had an emotional visit to the Chibondo Genocide Museum at the shrine, which depicts the massacres that happened during the war when thousands of Zimbabweans who were murdered by Rhodesians were buried in mine shafts.

After visiting the shrine, he toured the Zimbabwe National Defence University just outside Harare along the road to Bindura.

Today, he is expected to visit the Zimbabwe Staff College and the Museum of African Liberation.

As part of commitment to bringing peace in the region, Rwanda has deployed troops to Mozambique while Zimbabwe is set to send a team of 304 defence instructors to train Mozambican troops as part of its commitment to the SADC Standby Force Mission. 

Rwanda, which is not part of SADC, has deployed more than 1 000 soldiers who have already killed 30 insurgents in joint military campaigns with Mozambique.

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