The DR Congo has refuted Rwanda’s assertion that it used “defensive measures” against a jet that had allegedly breached its airspace.
After months of fighting in eastern DR Congo, which has caused some 400,000 people to evacuate their homes, this is a significant escalation.
Rwanda is charged of supporting the M23 rebel organization by the DR Congo, the US, and UN experts.
Rwanda disputes this and attributes the conflict to the Congolese government.
Rwanda twice launched soldiers into its much larger neighbor in the 1990s, setting off a massive conflict that involved at least nine nations and resulted in the deaths of millions of people.
While also attempting to find a diplomatic solution to the conflict, some East African nations have dispatched soldiers to the DR Congo to aid in the fight against the M23 rebels.
Images uploaded on social media, which the BBC has not yet independently verified, show a Sukhoi-25 aircraft being shot at while it is flying at a low altitude between the border towns of Goma in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Gisenyi in Rwanda.
Other pictures from the landing at Goma airport show water being used to put out a fire on the plane’s right wing. The airliner sustained no “serious material damage,” according to the DR Congo.
The government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) charged Rwanda with “sabotaging” the execution of a recent peace accord between the two nations.
The DR Congo “reserves the right to protect its sovereign territory and will not be endangered,” the Information Ministry continued.
The ministry stated, “The government considers this Rwandan attack, their nth, as a planned action.
Rwanda, on the other hand, claimed that this was the third time a Congolese fighter jet had violated its airspace and pleaded with its neighbor to “stop this aggression.”
Another Congolese Sukhoi-25 aircraft made a quick stop at Rwanda’s Gisenyi airport in November of last year. The fighter jet “mistakenly landed” there, according to Kinshasa.