AU Commission Chairperson Urges Armed Groups In DR Congo To Join Peace Process

The AU Commission Chairperson says the armed groups should lay down their weapons and embrace the peacebuilding process.

The Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, on Tuesday, May 24, called on rebels of the March 23 (M23) Movement in the Democratic Republic of Congo to “definitively lay down their arms and adhere to the Nairobi peace process”.

Mahamat condemned the recent attacks by the M23 against the DR Congo national army FARDC and Blue Helmets of the United Nations Organisation Stabilisation Mission in DR Congo (MONUSCO) in Rutshuru of North Kivu province, causing massive displacements of people and a humanitarian emergency.

The African Union leader expressed solidarity with the DR Congo authorities and the Special Representative of the United Nations as well as the MONUSCO chief and encouraged the Congolese authorities, in collaboration with MONUSCO, to reinforce the protection of sites hosting internally displaced persons and ensure the protection of civilians in the eastern part of the country.

There were clashes on Tuesday, May 24, between the M23 rebels and FARDC forces in the Buhumba tribal group near Kibamba, located about 25 kilometres to the north of the town of Goma.

The M23 rebels are not participating in the consultations that started over a week ago in the eastern DR Congo under the auspices of emissaries from Kinshasa in the Kenyan capital Nairobi.

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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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