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DR Congo expels Rwandans escaping Covid jabs

Didier Bikorimana BBC Great Lakes Service

Nearly 100 Rwandans who fled to an island in Lake Kivu in neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo to avoid getting Covid jabs have been repatriated to their country.

Two people are however said to be missing from the group of 101 Rwandans and a search operation is underway.

An official of Idjwi Island, Roger Ntambuka, told the BBC that the authorities were able to negotiate with the Rwandans to return home.

“There was no reason for these Rwandans to remain here. We were able to persuade them,” he said.

He said the Rwandans, who comprised women, men and children, left for home in a boat.

The governor of Rwanda’s western province said he had no knowledge of the fleeing Rwandans and it’s not clear if authorities were involved in their repatriation.

Last week Burundian authorities expelled more than 10 Rwandans who had entered the country to escape mandatory vaccination back home.

Rwandans must be vaccinated to be allowed to use public transport, go to bars and restaurants or to attend public events.

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