Thursday (October 22nd): Tshisekedi and Kagame meet at the UN

President Tshisekedi via Twitter

Name? Felix Tshisekedi

Westphalian identity? Uganda

Age? 59

Why is he in the news? Recently, French President Emmanuel Macron hosted Rwandan President Paul Kagame and President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo Felix Tshisekedi. The three met in New York where they attended the United Nations General Assembly, and discussed the future of the deepening relations between the two. The three agreed to intensify their efforts to end the crisis on the border between the DRC and Rwanda. 

Why do we care? This is an attempt by French President Emmanuel Macron to assert his influence and act as a mediator in post-colonial states. Macron wants to maintain his influence and reduce anti-French sentiment wherever it may be on the African continent, for example, by hosting the Afrique-France Summit last year. Especially because Kagame and Tshisekedi are in serious need of mediation.

Why should you care? The situation between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo has been ongoing over the past year. With more and more people forced to flee the area surrounding Uganda, refugee spillovers could spur additional conflict between the two states, as the leaders seek a resolution. Furthermore, as Kagame has repeatedly denied his association with the M23 rebels fighting in the DRC, it is unclear if this meeting will have any substantial effect on Rwanda-DRC relations given the circumstances, therefore you should care 5/10 about this meeting

Who else cares? Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni is bound to care about this meeting between the three leaders. Migrants fleeing the situation have been choosing Uganda as their choice of refuge amidst the fighting between the M23 rebels and the DRC. Museveni and Tshisekedi have also joined forces in the past to fight against the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), another terrorist group in the DRC. 

Any further comments? Tshisekedi also dedicated parts of his UN speech to highlight the aggressions by Rwanda, through the support of the M23 rebels.