Submit this form
Home News Videos Music Photos Facebook Twitter Friends Newsletter Podcasts Mobile RSS
UN-backed talks in DR Congo making slow progress, envoy tells Security Council

Previous article | Next
VOA News - January 15, 2009
Olusegun Obasanjo

Tensions between the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Rwanda are beginning to thaw as on-going peace talks, aimed at ending fighting in the east of the DRC between the Government and the main rebel militia in the region, are making slow progress, the United Nations envoy facilitating negotiations told the Security Council today.

The UN-backed talks between the Government of the DRC and the mainly Tutsi group known as the National Congress in Defense of the People (CNDP) began in Nairobi last month in a bid to end the bloody conflict, which has uprooted an estimated 250,000 people since late August on top of the 800,000 who were already displaced in the region, mainly in North Kivu.

“Much remains to be done, but by comparison with where the eastern DRC and the region found themselves on 7 November 2008, I am happy to report some progress,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's Special Envoy to the Great Lakes Region, Olusegun Obasanjo, told the Security Council.

In his briefing to the 15-member Council, the Special Envoy reported that cooperation between DRC and Rwanda, whose troops were accused of fighting alongside rebels in the Kivu provinces, had improved, noting that “in November, relations between Kinshasa and Kigali had sharply deteriorated.”

He said that DRC and Rwanda have agreed on a military plan to put pressure on the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR), an armed militia involved in clashes in North Kivu where the national army (FARDC), the CNDP, and other rebel groups such as the Mai Mai have fought in various permutations and shifting alliances.

Mr. Obasanjo also pointed to direct talks between the DRC and the CNDP as another advance in the move towards a cessation of hostilities, especially after the rebel group had accused the FARDC in November of incursions into areas it had vacated and asked the UN peacekeeping mission in the DRC (MONUC) to occupy.

“The atmosphere between the two delegations has tended to ease, with some confidence beginning to be built and the parties increasingly working together directly,” said Mr. Obasanjo, adding that although Goma – the capital of North Kivu – faces a dire humanitarian crisis, the threat from a military takeover by the CNDP has receded.

The two sides also settled on a document establishing the ground rules for substantive discussions, slated to start later this month, and stating the desired outcome of the dialogue should incorporate the January 2008 Goma agreement, which included a commitment by rebels to withdraw their troops and to either disarm or join the brassage process, whereby ex-combatants from armed groups are retrained to form part of FARDC.

The Envoy stressed that, “This is critical, as it reaffirms the parties’ commitment to the principles of the Goma process, but [also] calls for new implementing mechanisms, as well as for a comprehensive agreement addressing the root causes of the conflict.”

“The momentum for peace generated so far, cannot, must not and will not be allowed to die,” said Mr. Obasanjo.

Meanwhile in Nairobi the third session of the peace talks was adjourned until 25 January by the Co-Mediator and African Union Special Envoy, Benjamin Mkapa.

In his closing remarks to the two delegations, Mr. Mkapa said that “when we gathered on 7 January this year, to commence proceedings on the Third Session, we were acutely aware of the challenges and obstacles that lay ahead.”

“I am very pleased to note that we have made remarkable progress by adopting the ground rules that will guide the noble task of substantive dialogue to resolve the crisis,” he added.


Related articles


  1. At least 30 dead after massacres in Ituri (March 2, 2018)
  2. Peacekeepers, Congo Army to Resume Joint Fight Against Rwandan Rebels (January 28, 2016)
  3. Political tensions 'running high' in DR Congo ahead of 2016 elections (October 7, 2015)
  4. DRC Army Putting Pressure on FDLR (April 1, 2015)
  5. Southern African Leaders to Meet in Zimbabwe (August 15, 2014)
  6. Kerry Calls on Kabila to Honor Constitution (May 4, 2014)
  7. Security Council extends UN mission, intervention force in DR Congo for one year (March 28, 2014)
  8. Bosco Ntaganda Attacked Civilians on Ethnic Grounds, ICC Prosecutor Says (February 10, 2014)
  9. New DR Congo amnesty law welcomed by UN envoys (February 5, 2014)
  10. Colonel Mamadou Ndala Is Killed in Ambush (January 2, 2014)
  11. No 'Peace Deal' With Defeated M23 Rebels, DR Congo Says (November 11, 2013)
  12. Congo Will Not Sign a 'Peace Deal' With Defeated M23 Rebels, Government Says (November 6, 2013)
  13. Congo Army Takes Control of Mbuzi Hill From M23 Rebels (November 4, 2013)
  14. Kabila Congratulates Congo Army for Defeating M23 Rebels (October 30, 2013)
  15. Advancing Congo Troops Take Control of Rumangabo From M23 Rebels (October 28, 2013)
  16. Congo Army Liberates Rutshuru, Kiwanja and Kibumba From M23 Rebels (October 27, 2013)
  17. Congo Army Dislodges M23 Rebels From Strategic Town of Kibumba (October 26, 2013)
  18. Ban Ki-moon Confirms M23 Rebels Shelled Rwanda (August 31, 2013)
  19. DR Congo Will Defend Itself Against an Attack by Rwanda, Government Says (August 31, 2013)
  20. M23 Rebels Fired Shells Into Rwanda, Not Congo Army, UN Says (August 30, 2013)
  21. Mortar Shells From Rwanda Kill Civilians in Eastern Congo (August 23, 2013)
  22. Dozens of M23 Rebels Killed by Congo Army in Renewed Fighting (August 22, 2013)
  23. UN Peacekeepers Start Enforcing Security Zone in Eastern Congo (August 1, 2013)
  24. UN Security Council debate focuses on peace efforts for Africa's Great Lakes region (July 25, 2013)
  25. M23 Rebels Said to Flee Rumangabo After Congo Army Airstrikes (July 25, 2013)
  26. Congo Army Strikes M23 Rebels Base At Rumangabo (July 24, 2013)
  27. M23 Rebels Kill, Rape Civilians in Eastern Congo: Human Rights Watch (July 22, 2013)
  28. M23 Rebels in Disarray in Eastern Congo, Says Government Spokesman (July 19, 2013)
  29. 120 M23 Rebels Killed in East, Government Says (July 15, 2013)
  30. Bosco Ntaganda in the International Criminal Court's custody (March 22, 2013)


Live TV Congo Radio en ligne Radio


Make CongoPlanet.com Your Home Page | Contact Us | About Us | ╔dition en Franšais | French Edition

© 2018 CongoPlanet.com. All rights reserved.