Suspected Rwandan security operatives kidnap Ugandan in Kabale

Monday July 13 2020



Uganda-Rwanda border. URN PHOTO

Uganda-Rwanda border. URN PHOTO 

By URN

A Ugandan has been kidnapped by suspected Rwandan security personnel in Kabale district.

Mr Levy Byomuhangi, a resident of Rugarama village in Nyinamuronzi ward, Katuna was kidnapped by gunmen dressed in Rwandan army uniform at Mushenyi village, Karuhanga parish, Rubaya Sub County, about 20 metres away from Uganda-Rwanda border.

Mr Saime Twesigomwe, the Rubaya Sub County, LC3 Chairperson said that the security personnel crossed into Uganda while pursuing suspected smugglers but instead arrested Byomuhangi after failing to trace the smugglers.

“Mr Byomuhangi was heading home from Mushenyi village where he had spent the whole day burning charcoal. The gunmen dressed in Rwandan army uniform from nowhere handcuffed him and took him to Rwanda,” he said.

Mr Nelson Nshangabasheija, the Katuna Town Council LC3 Chairperson described the incident as unfortunate saying that Byomuhangi's family is living in fear that he could be harmed.

Lieutenant Colonel Robert Nahamya, the Uganda Peoples Defence Forces (UPDF) 19th Battalion Commander said that Ugandan security officials have contacted their counterparts in Rwanda demanding for Byomuhangi’s release.

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“As UPDF, we have informed authorities in Rwanda and we are working hand in hand with them to see that our citizen is released,” he said.

Many Ugandans have been arrested while others killed by Rwandan security personnel.

Last month, Sydney, a resident of Kagogo village in Bigaga parish, Butanda Sub County, Kabale District was shot dead by Rwandan security accusing him of smuggling matchboxes into Rwanda 15 kilometres from the borderline.

In April 2019, three farmers Susan Rwanjungu, Junensia Bazongoza and Jovia Ruvungafu, were arrested by armed Rwandan soldiers while digging in their gardens and taken into Rwanda.

The Uganda-Rwanda border has been closed since February 2019 following a diplomatic row between the two countries.

Rwandan officials including President Paul Kagame accused Ugandan authorities of abducting its citizens and locking them up in un-gazetted areas as well as hosting, sponsoring and facilitating dissidents.

Talks between the two countries are yet to yield positive results.

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