UK likely to cancel aid to Rwanda amid claims its rulers were linked to militias accused of rape and murder
Ministers are likely to cancel plans to give more public money to Rwanda amid claims that its rulers were linked to militias accused of rape and murder, Whitehall sources have said.
Justine Greening, the International Development Secretary, told MPs she would think “very carefully” before approving more “general budget support”– cash paid direct to the African nation’s government.
Her predecessor, Andrew Mitchell, signed off on the payment of £16m of frozen aid on his last day in the post in September, although he instructed that half should go to specific projects.
Britain had initially suspended its planned £37m “general budget support” in June after a United Nations report said President Paul Kagame’s administration was sponsoring violent rebels in neighbouring Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
His decision was highly controversial, sparking accusations by Labour that Mr Mitchell was motivated by his friendship with President Kagame.
Ms Greening now has to decide whether to approve the payment of a further £21m of aid due at the end of next month.
The signs are growing that she would veto the second handover of cash.
One senior Whitehall source told The Independent: “I suspect she won’t make the payment.”
A second source said: “She is going to have a really detailed, critical look at this.”
Ms Greening told the Commons international development select committee that Mr Mitchell’s decision had been taken in a “sound and robust manner”.
But she added that continuing support for Rwanda would depend on its ability to prove it was not fuelling conflict in the region.
She said reports linking the Kigame government to the DRC militias were “very disturbing” and said her decision on whether to approve aid would partly depend on whether it would condemn atrocities by the militias, which Rwanda has so far failed to do.
Britain and Rwanda have signed a memorandum of understanding committing them to “partnership principles” of working for peace and stability in the region, upholding human rights and combatting poverty.
Ms Greening refused to be drawn on whether she believed Rwanda had lived up to its side of the agreement.
She said: “It is too early conclude whether I feel Rwanda has made progress on our partnership principles in the past month. The partnership principles are very important. It is a challenge for me to look at [Rwanda’s] progress and where there is less progress or indeed no progress
Arsenal strengthened their grip on a top-four finish with a straightforward 3-0 win over Hull City.
Easter egg hunt horror as mother finds dead body under deck of house
Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Wreckage could be found within a week as search reaches 'very critical juncture', says minister
Wheat rust: The fungal disease that threatens to destroy the world crop
Loch Ness Monster found on Apple Maps?
Royal Tour 2014: Is the Duchess of Cambridge the only person ever to climb into a fighter jet wearing a dress and high heels?
The food poverty scandal that shames Britain: Nearly 1m people rely on handouts to eat – and benefit reforms may be to blame
Scottish independence: It is the English who should be on their knees, begging the Scots to vote ‘No’
Nigel Farage fatigue? Half of voters ‘immune’ to Ukip’s appeal
'Sinful': Video of British Muslims dancing to Pharrell Williams's hit Happy comes under attack
Nigel Farage: I’m taking on the status quo, and the Establishment’s fighting back
Refugee facing deportation from Sweden saved by fellow passengers refusing to let plane leave
- 1 Easter egg hunt horror as mother finds dead body under deck of house
- 2 'Natural' energy drink banned for containing erectile dysfunction drug
- 3 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 4 Loch Ness Monster found on Apple Maps?
- 5 How We Met: Alison Moyet & Emma Kennedy: 'I knew we'd be friends because she was happy to make a prat of herself'
£150.00 per week: QA Apprenticeships: This company is a company that specializ...
£153.75 per week: QA Apprenticeships: This company is an innovative outsourcin...
£150.00 per week: QA Apprenticeships: This company has been providing on site ...
£150.00 per week: QA Apprenticeships: We've been supplying best of breed peopl...