Rwandan peacekeepers in CAR decorated

Rwandan peacekeeping troops on patrol in Bangui, CAR

Rwandan peacekeeping troops on patrol in Bangui, CAR

Days after Rwandan troops in Darfur were awarded medals of honour by the UN Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID), their compatriots operating in the Central African Republic (CAR) have been decorated with medals of Honour for their good services by the United Nations Mission in the conflict-blighted nation.

These decorations also come months after Rwanda lost some of its five peacekeepers in a friendly-fire incident in which a Rwandan soldier shot and killed four fellow Rwandan peacekeeping troops injuring many before turning taking his own life in the Central African Republic capital Bangui.

The UN has since apologized and sent condolences to Rwandan families who lost their beloved ones in the “regrettable” incident and the UN Security Council have condemned it calling for investigation into the cause.

In a ceremony held at Socatel Mpoko Military Camp and presided over by Ambassador Diane Corner, the Deputy UN Secretary General Special Representative in CAR, the 2nd Battalion of Rwandan Forces was decorated with UN Peacekeeping Medal in recognition of their commitment, professionalism and discipline on duty while serving in the country.

The Chief Personnel (Chief U1) Lt Col Edward Mensah hailed the forces for their professional accomplishments including containing and foiling an attempted coup and attack on the Presidential Palace last year.

“You firmly stood and protected State Power Organs and the Presidential Palace, now all the Government Institutions are on good move, thank you for this courageous act”, Col. Mensah said.

Rwandan peacekeeping troops have been in the Central African nation since 2013 when turmoil broke out following Muslim Seleka rebels takeover of power mounting deadly crackdown on Christian churches and communities.

In a related development, Rwanda Defence Forces peacekeepers stationed in Zalingei, Sector Central Darfur and serving under the African Union – United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) were decorated with medals on 15 September 2015 in recognition of the job well done.