Macron Backs Dialogue in Resolving DRC-Rwanda Tensions

French President Emmanuel Macron has expressed his support for resolving tensions between the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Rwanda through dialogue. This follows a meeting with Angolan President João Lourenço, who is currently mediating between the two nations.

A statement from the French Presidency revealed a “fruitful discussion” between the presidents, focusing on addressing the DRC’s issues through diplomatic channels. Macron emphasized his support for “any initiative aimed at finding sustainable solutions through dialogue,” echoing the sentiments recently expressed by his counterparts, Presidents Kagame of Rwanda and Tshisekedi of the DRC.

This announcement coincides with renewed efforts for reconciliation. In February 2024, DRC President Tshisekedi announced plans to resume talks with his Rwandan counterpart.

Macron’s backing follows previous French involvement in facilitating DRC-Rwanda rapprochement. In September 2022, amid heightened tensions, Presidents Kagame, Tshisekedi, and Macron held discussions on promoting peace in the Great Lakes region, particularly eastern DRC. These discussions took place during the United Nations General Assembly in New York, where the leaders also participated in UN Security Council talks.

According to Jeune Afrique, France has significantly increased its involvement in the reconciliation process since September 2022. This included discussions with Rwandan leadership and pledges of support to President Tshisekedi. Reports also suggest Macron actively supports President Lourenço’s mediation efforts and endorses all initiatives aimed at de-escalating the ongoing tensions.