Already expelled from Kinshasa, Rwanda's new ambassador to Brussels is undesirable

Already expelled from Kinshasa, Rwanda’s new ambassador to Brussels is undesirable

The Kingdom of Belgium refuses to accredit Mr. Vincent Karega as the new ambassador of Rwanda to Belgium. March 2023, Rwanda appointed Vincent Karega as new ambassador to Brussels, almost five months after his expulsion by the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Nearly five months after his expulsion from the Democratic Republic of Congo, the former Rwandan ambassador to Kinshasa Vincent Karega is again assigned to a diplomatic post, this time in Belgium. But, according to information collected by Jambonews from Rwandan diplomatic sources, Belgium refused to grant accreditation to Vincent Karega.

According to Jambonews, organizations defending human rights and promoting democracy in Belgium sent a letter on April 9, 2023 to the Belgian foreign ministries to express their concerns regarding the designation of Mr. Vincent Karega as ambassador. They highlighted Mr. Karega’s controversial past as ambassador to South Africa and the Democratic Republic of Congo, where he was accused of tracking down political opponents and Rwandan refugees.

Posted in Kinshasa from July 2020, the diplomat, a native of the Congolese province of North Kivu, quickly saw relations with the DRC deteriorate when, at the end of 2021, the M23 armed group launched its offensive in the east of the country, supported according to the Congolese authorities by Kigali, which Rwanda has always denied.

Before the DRC, Vincent Karega had spent eight years in office in Pretoria. A period marked by cross-expulsions of diplomats in 2014, with South African authorities accusing Rwandan emissaries of being involved in attacks on its soil against opponents of President Paul Kagame’s regime. Allegations always denied by the government.