The Democratic Republic of Congo has expelled Rwandan soldiers attached to the Command of the East African Community Regional Force based in the eastern town of Goma.

The military explained that the soldiers were expelled from the force for security reasons, and have already left Congolese soil.

The regional force consists of soldiers from East African countries who have joined the Congolese Army, with the support of UN peacekeepers, in fighting rebel groups in eastern Congo.

The Congolese military also said Rwanda had in response recalled all its officers from Congo, but the authorities in Kigali have denied the claim.

Rwanda’s Army spokesperson, Brigadier General, Ronald Rwivanga, also confirmed the development.

However, Democratic Republic of Congo had denied the involvement of Rwandan troops in the regional force that was deployed last year to the mineral-rich North Kivu province. But it allowed a few Rwandan officers to be part of the force’s command as well as a security verification team.

It was gathered that tensions between Kigali and Kinshasa degenerated last week after Rwanda shot at a Congolese fighter jet near Goma airport.