26 November 2012

Tanzania: AU Seeks Faster DR Congo Solutions

THE African Union (AU) has called for the immediate implementation of the Kampala Summit decisions on the situation in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

According to a statement posted on the AU website, the Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU), Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, has stressed on the importance of the decisions reached by the Extraordinary Summit of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) in Kampala on Saturday.

The Summit, in which the Chairperson of the Commission and the Commissioner for Peace and Security participated, outlined a 10-point plan that provides for the immediate withdrawal of the M23 elements from all the locations they recently occupied, as well as the establishment of security arrangements to monitor the situation on the ground.

"The Chairperson of the Commission welcomes the commitment of DRC government to listen, evaluate and resolve any legitimate grievances of the M23. She urges the M23 immediately to take the steps expected of it, in line with the Kampala decisions.

The Chairperson of the Commission requests all concerned to fully cooperate with the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the DRC (MONUSCO) and the envisaged neutral regional arrangements, to facilitate the effective implementation of their mandates," reads the statement in part.

She stressed the obligation of all concerned parties to refrain from any action that could put at risk the security and safety of MONUSCO personnel, as well as any other neutral elements. She reiterated AU's appreciation to the ICGLR, in particular to its current Chairman, President Yoweri Museveni, for its commitment to the promotion of lasting peace, security and development in the region.

She called on all the countries of the region to lend their full support to the ongoing efforts and to contribute to the early resolution of the current crisis. She also appeals to all the AU member states to extend political and material support to the regional efforts.

President Mwai Kibaki of Kenya and Tanzania's Jakaya Kikwete who is the current Chairman of the SADC Organ on Security, Defence and Politics under the framework of the International Conference on Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) was in Kampala for the summit, along with host President Museveni.

Also in attendance are head of African Union Commission Dlamini-Zuma, the Mozambican Foreign Affairs minister Oldemiro Júlio Marques Balói and South Africa Defence minister Mapisa-Nqakula and East Africa Community Secretary General Richard Sezibera.

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