Uganda blocked online access to Rwandan newspaper

By Doug Mattushek - 24 August 2019Views : 637

Uganda said on Friday it had blocked online access to Rwanda's main state owned newspaper on national security grounds.

This comes two days after the countries signed a pact to end tensions that closed their busiest border crossing for six months.

Uganda's communications regulator asked all internet service providers to block access to New Times website in the country, the regulator's executive director told Reuters.

"We have blocked it", said Godfrey Mutabazi, adding that the New Times had been identified by a government agency in charge of internal security as a "hostile platfrom that is likely to cuase insecurity in this country."

The publication which has a sizeable audience in Uganda, an Anglophone country with a large Rwandan community. However, there was no immediate comment from the Rwandan government on the decision taken by Uganda's regulator.

On Wednesday, the presidents of Rwanda and Uganda signed a deal in the Angolan capital. Having agreed to honour each other's sovereignty, refrain from actions that destabliise the other's territory and resume :as soon as possible" cross-border activites.

The neighbours who have a long-running rivalry which led to conflict in the past, but tensions had boiled over in February, when Rwanda closed their main border crossing.

It was briefly re-opened to cargo trucks in June but then closed again. With Rwandans being banned from travelling to Uganda, which has accused Rwanda of effectively imposing a trade embargo.