Great Lakes: Kigali denies massing troops on Burundi border
"Our troops are evenly deployed in all corners of our country," Col Patrick Karegeya, the army spokesman, told IRIN. "We have not massed any troops along the Burundi border. Those are reports based on mere hearsay."
He added, "What people could have seen in the region bordering Burundi is [the] mere readjustment of our troop deployment."
There have been news reports of a sharp rise in tension along the border, with Rwanda anticipating that Congo-based Rwandan Hutu rebels would cross into Burundi and then attack Rwanda. For years, these rebels have used Congo as a base and have, in the past, used Burundi's Kibira Forest in Cibitoke Province to attack Rwanda.
"We have these reports of continued intentions by extremist forces to destabilise our country but we have means and capacity to halt their attacks," he said.
The governor of the southwestern Rwandan Province of Butare, which borders Burundi, also said there had been no heavy troop movement and that there had not been any displacement of the population following the reports.
"We are going on well with our routine business," he said.
Extremist Hutu fighters fled to the Congo after the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, in which the government estimates that up to 937,000 people were killed - mainly Tutsis and political moderate Hutus.
Col Karegeya also denied reports that a meeting was scheduled between senior Rwandan military officers and their Burundian counterparts.
Meanwhile, the UN Mission in the DRC reported from the capital, Kinshasa, that a company of mostly South African UN troops (120 to 140 soldiers) and three military observers began investigations on Tuesday into the reports that the Hutu militia, known as the Forces democratiques pour la liberation du Rwanda, were making incursions into Rwanda.
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