Angolan President To Mediate Talks Between DR Congo and Rwanda

The peace talks in Angola between the two leaders hopes to see to a final resolution of the conflict between DR Congo and Rwanda, and an end to armed violence in Eastern DR Congo.

Angolan President Joao Lourenco will today, in Luanda, the country’s capital, mediate talks between President Felix Tshisekedi of the Democratic Republic of Congo and Paul Kagame of Rwanda following the tension between the two neighbouring nations.

President Lourenco was designated mediator between the two countries by the current chairman of the African Union, President Macky Sall of Senegal.

“The two presidents would leave their capitals on Tuesday to Luanda,” a top Angolan official said.

“The summit under the mediation of their Angolan colleague will be held minutes after their arrival.”

 A close collaborator of President Tshisekedi confirmed the news, assuring that the president “is ready to prove to the world that Rwanda has stabbed us in the back by supporting the M23 rebels”.

The two countries are at daggers drawn since the M23 rebel group resumed attacks against the Congolese army in the eastern DR Congo near the Rwandan and Ugandan borders.

DR Congo has accused Rwanda of supporting the M23 rebels. Still, Rwanda denied it while charging DR Congo with collaborating with Rwandan Hutu rebels of the Front Democratiques pour la Liberation de Rwanda (FDLR), accused of the 1994 genocide against Tutsis and moderate Hutus in Rwanda.

“We recall that we are opposed to all types of dialogue between DR Congo and Rwanda,” a statement by the DR Congo Citizens Movement said.

“We recall that Rwandan/M23 troops are still occupying part of Congolese territory when we are talking. Therefore, we are shocked that President Tshisekedi has accepted to attend this meeting.”  

This influential civil society movement has warned President Tshisekedi to “not engage DR Congo in supplementary accords which would peril our country’s economic and territorial sovereignty”.

 On the eve of the meeting, the head of the diplomacy of the European Union, Josep Borrell, had invited “all the partner countries concerned to be actively involved and to avoid all that can endanger the process”.

Cardinal Fridolin Ambongo, Archbishop of Kinshasa, on Sunday, July 3, called for the direct involvement of the Catholic Church in resolving conflicts, and Pope Francois also called for the silencing of arms in the region.

On Monday, July 4, President Paul Kagame declared that the conflict necessitates a political and not a military approach.

President Tshisekedi had, on his part, declared June ending that he had resolved to direct his efforts towards the double fronts of diplomacy and military.

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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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One Comment

  1. I think it’s time for Kagame and his regime to understand that we’re in twenty-first century. Since 1994 up today, Kagame and his people have been waging wars to DRC and to anyone in Rwanda dare to stand up against Kagame-regime. The FDLR and the INTERAMWEH is a Rwandan problem. Where the responsibility of the DRC lies on this?.

    Remember, the 1994 genocide in Rwanda took place between Rwandans, without any involvement of any Congolese.

    Former President of Tanzania Jakaya Kikwete, during an ICGLR summit, had recommended to the Rwandan Government to open a dialogue with Rwandans on DRC soil, provoking the anger of PR Kagame who slammed the conference door.

    So, this kagame and his regime, if he’s running Rwanda by creating sorts of rebel groups in congo and not willing to do business as usually, then the Africa Unions must stand up against Kagame-regime.

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