Angola Sends Peace Emissary To DR Congo

‘Neigbourly’ concern follows the expulsion of Rwandan diplomat, after international acknowledgment of the role Rwanda plays in supporting Congolese rebel movement.

The president of Angola has dispatched an emissary to the Democratic Republic of Congo in the hope of kickstarting a peace process for the conflict in the eastern part of the country. 

President Joao Lourenco, the facilitator of the Luanda Process for peace in the Democratic Republic of Congo, dispatched his country’s External Relations Minister Tete Antonio, to Kinshasa to meet President Felix Tshisekedi on Oct 30. 

The move comes just 24 hours after DR Congo expelled Rwandan ambassador Vincent Karega. The expulsion followed the acknowledgement by international diplomats that Rwanda has been supporting rebels fighting DR Congo’s armed forces.

“President Lourenco had received a mandate to mediate between the DR Congo and Rwanda. Within this context, he continues his efforts in the circumstances of today. He was clear in Dakar, when he took part in the conference on security in Africa, that he would continue to work in a way that peace returns to the sub region”, declared Minister Tete Antonio as he came out of his audience with President Tshisekedi.

“Angola is an immediate neighbour of the DR Congo. In the African culture, when something is happening in a neighbour’s house, we also feel concerned. It is necessary to go and see the neighbour to be informed so as to see how to overcome the situation”, the Angolan minister added.

Without wishing to take sides, the Angolan minister declared that “A mediator is expected to be in the middle. He listens to all the parties and at the end, he searches for a solution without going into the big details”, adding that “the attitude of President Tshisekedi has never changed, be it during difficulties or in happy times. It is always an attitude of fraternity. That is what we all must do”.

The Democratic Republic of Congo on Saturday October 29, 2022 expelled the Rwandan ambassador to the country, Vincent Karega, after repeatedly accusing Rwanda of supporting the March 23 (M23) rebel movement that has been wreaking havoc in the eastern DR Congo.

The US alternate representative to the UN Robert Woods last week referenced the support Rwanda was giving the M23 rebels in Eastern Congo. The violence ws “unacceptable” and support from Rwanda should stop, he said.  

The Angolan General Massone Joao had been appointed to head the ad hoc verification mechanism charged with verifying accusations by the DR Congo against Rwanda.

The African Union, European Union and the United Nations have been insisting that the East African Community be involved in the resolution of the crisis between the DR Congo and Rwanda, thus all eyes are turned particularly towards the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region.

President Joao Lourenco is the current president of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region while the Angolan diplomat, Joao Samuel Caholo, is the Executive Secretary of the Conference.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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