India to open its first mission in Rwanda

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India to open its first mission in Rwanda
France Mukantagazwa, who lost her father and other relatives in the genocide and believes their bodies may be in the newly found graves, sheds a tear as she speaks to media at the site of the recently-discovered mass grave in Gasabo district, near the capital Kigali, in Rwanda Thursday, April 26, 2018. Mass graves that authorities say could contain more than 2,000 bodies have been discovered in Rwanda nearly a quarter-century after the country's genocide. (AP Photo/Eric Murinzi)

New Delhi:  In yet another manifestation of India’s growing engagements with Africa, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said that India will soon open a High Commission in the East African nation of Rwanda.

Stating that India and Rwanda were looking forward to further elevate their ties, Modi, while addressing the media in Rwandan capital Kigali following delegation-level talks with Rwandan President Paul Kagame, said: “We will soon open a High Commission in Rwanda.”

India’s current High Commissioner to Rwanda has residence in Uganda.

New Delhi elevated its ties with Rwanda to that of a Strategic Partnership as it sees that country as an important gateway to eastern Africa.

External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted that following a one-on-one meeting, Modi and Kagame held delegation level-talks “to strengthen partnership in trade and investment, capacity building, development partnership and people-to-people ties”.

Modi reached Kigali on Monday evening in the first leg of his three-nation our of Africa that will also take him to Uganda and South Africa.

This is the first ever Prime Ministerial visit from India to Rwanda.

In his address, Modi appreciated the steps for peace that have been adopted in Rwanada following the mass genocide in that country in 1994.

Around 500,000 to one million people were killed in the mass genocide against the Tutsi people by the majority Hutu government of tha time.

“For us, it is a matter pride that India is a trusted development partner of Rwanda,” Modi said.

“We have been helping Rwanda in capacity building, infrastructure development and ICT,” he said.

Following the bilateral talks, the two sides several agreements, including in the areas of defence, agriculture and dairy production.

On his part, Kagame, in his address to the media, said that both sides discussed a range of bilateral, regional and global issues.

He also thanked India for its development aid cooperation with Rwanda.