In a fiery campaign speech in the conflict-ridden east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, President Felix Tshisekedi took a bold stance, likening Rwandan President Paul Kagame to Adolf Hitler. Tshisekedi accused Kagame of harboring expansionist ambitions in the DRC, particularly in the volatile eastern region.
Addressing a lively crowd in Bukavu, South Kivu province, Tshisekedi asserted, “I’m going to address Rwandan President Paul Kagame and tell him this: since he wanted to behave like Adolf Hitler by having expansionist aims (in the DRC), I promise he will end up like Adolf Hitler,”. The president, in office since 2019, has a history of tension with Rwanda, previously labeling it a “horrible neighbour” and accusing it of seeking to control the wealth, notably in mining, of eastern DRC.
While much of the DRC has experienced relative stability post major conflicts in the 1990s and 2000s, the eastern region remains plagued by violence from rebel groups. The M23, allegedly supported by Rwanda (which Rwanda denies), has been a source of ongoing tension.
Tshisekedi emphasized his commitment to a peaceful coexistence with neighbors but criticized their ambitions, stating, “But the problem is that our neighbors have eyes bigger than their stomachs, and that’s the case with my colleague Kagame.”
Running for a second term, Tshisekedi has prioritized improving the lives of the poor, combating corruption, and addressing conflicts in the east. His upcoming visit to Goma, the capital of North Kivu, is part of his campaign efforts ahead of the December 20 election.