Despite a steady stream of denials from Kigali and Kampala, ties between Rwanda and Uganda appear to be deteriorating rapidly.
The latest ebb in this historically volatile relationship stems from the Ugandan government’s pushback on what it perceives as Rwandan meddling in its domestic affairs. Though Ugandan officials had not gone public with any formal allegations, their dissatisfaction has finally been read in a recent string of increasingly high-profile incidents.
Last year, the Ugandan government mounted a crackdown on suspected Rwandan spies operating in Uganda, including the arrest of a handful of Ugandan police officers accused of being part of a so-called sleeper cell carrying out kidnappings and surveillance on behalf of the Rwandan government. And in March, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni sacked his long-time police chief and security minister, both of whom had close ties to Rwandan President Paul Kagame.
Latest coming to our news desk indicates that the Rwandan government has blocked entry of Ugandan cement being exported into Rwanda at katuna border post which is highly believed to be a warning response to the Ugandan government over the recent developments where most Rwandans have been reported back on grounds of espionage.
Although the situation doesn’t appear to be heading toward outright conflict in East Africa, this growing animosity could stall attempts to increase cooperation and integration in the region. If it escalates any further, it could also worsen already tense situations in neighboring countries.
While war between Rwanda and Uganda is almost unimaginable, proxy battles have sprung from their private disagreements before.
Still, Museveni and Kagame, whose histories are deeply intertwined, have bounced back from worse. Their troubled relationship stretches back decades, to a period before either was in power. During the Ugandan Bush War in the early 1980s, which ended when Museveni seized power from Milton Obote, Kagame served as Museveni’s spy chief. In fact, much of Rwanda’s current leadership cut their teeth in the Bush War with Museveni’s militia, the National Resistance Army.
Details on Rwanda’s action are coming soon as we try to dig deep into the matter, share and hit the like button below .