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UN Welcomes Agreement to End M23 Rebellion in DRC

Nov 5, 2013 3:19 PM   By Jeff Miller
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RAPAPORT... The United Nations (UN) special envoy for Africa’s Great Lakes region welcomed an announcement by the M23 rebel group that it is ending the insurgency against the diamond-rich Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The agreement reestablishes state authority in areas previously held by the M23.

The envoy also welcomed the commitment of the DRC's government to end combat and complete steps agreed to as part of the Kampala Dialogue. Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni and his Defense Minister, Crispus Kiyonga, facilitated the agreement.

Nonetheless, UN officials deplored the activities of other armed groups in the region, including Mayi Mayi, the FDLR, the National Army for the Liberation of Uganda (NALU) and the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF).

While the envoys noted that the end of the M23 rebellion represents an important step in ensuring sustainable peace in the eastern DRC and the Great Lakes region, they stressed that “this is only one step towards addressing the persistent conflict and instability and to ensure an end to all illegitimate armed actors in the DRC, including the FDLR (Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda).”

The envoys urged all signatories of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the Great Lakes and the DRC to recommit to ensuring the implementation of the accord, including by advancing a political dialog between key countries in the region.

Today’s announcement comes in the wake of fresh clashes between DRC's troops (FARDC) and M23 fighters in and around flashpoint towns in the eastern DRC. The UN mission (MONUSCO), which has been supporting the government’s operations, has been on “high alert” since the violence began to escalate months ago. Since late September,  helicopters were fired upon twice and three peacekeepers have been killed in the line of duty.

Tags: drc, fardc, insurgents, Jeff Miller, m23, peace talks, rebellion, United Nations
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