Based on the Government of Rwanda (GOR) assessment of the internal and external security environment, the Ministry of Defence recognises the importance of alliances and cooperation aimed at inter alia promoting collective security arrangements. Furthermore, the GOR upholds the tenet of conflict prevention as the foundation of maintaining international peace and security. Key to conflict prevention is deterrence via defence diplomacy as well as through maintenance of credible defence capability to inhibit potential enemies and adversaries with aggressive intentions.
Defence Diplomacy as part of conflict prevention is an important aspect of Rwanda’s defence mission. It mainly involves actions designed to dispel hostilities, build and maintain trust, and/or offer assistance to friendly nations or armed forces in support of peace.
In consonance with the aspirations of its foreign policy, the principle of the reciprocity and other diplomatic practices, military cooperation and defence diplomacy focuses on:
• Maintaining an appropriate number of Defence Attachments in selected foreign missions;
• Military exchange programmes;
• Security assistance programmes;
• Control of small arms in co-operation with neighbouring states;
• Combined exercises to enhance interoperability; peace support operations;
• Enabling collective security arrangements;
• Technology transfer;
· Peace Keeping Operations (PKO). Today, Rwanda is the fifth biggest Troop Contributing Country in the world, with over 5,000 RDF peacekeepers deployed in UNAMID in Sudan, UNMISS in South Sudan and MINUSCA in the Central African Republic.
Rwanda has formalised cooperation in a variety of fields with Nations and Organisations.