The hidden anniversary: The war in the resource-rich eastern Congo has been escalating for a year. It claims many lives and has turned 450,000 people into refugees. And the USA and the EU are silent and do not criticise Rwanda, but the EU gives 20 million Euros to the Rwandan army. The Congolese feel that very little has been done to support their sovereignty - a point made even more obvious when compared to the invasion of Ukraine, which began shortly afterwards.
Because of this Western complicity in the attack by the M23, directly supported by Rwanda with soldiers and weapons, 60 per cent of the population in the Democratic Republic of Congo now prefer Russia as a partner because of mounting evidence that the Rwandan government is supporting the M23 rebellion.
In March 2022, the M23 rebellion launched this new offensive in North Kivu province in eastern Congo. The renewed activity of the rebel group, which had been largely dormant for about 10 years, led to a severe humanitarian crisis with over 450,000 people displaced and many dead. Despite mounting evidence of Rwanda's support for the rebel group, the international community was reluctant to condemn Rwanda and many countries chose not to condemn the country publicly. The Congolese felt that very little was being done to support their sovereignty - a point that became even more apparent when compared to the invasion of Ukraine that began shortly afterwards. In the words of an army commander I spoke to, "We also condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Our problems are the same, we were also invaded by a neighbouring country, Rwanda. But the West never recognised the aggression against the Democratic Republic of Congo." In addition, the European Union, through its European Peace Facility, announced that it would provide 20 million euros to the Rwandan armed forces for their mission in Mozambique. The prospect of Europe helping Rwanda, despite mounting evidence that the Rwandan government is supporting the M23 rebellion, has particularly angered the Congolese government and the wider Congolese public.