President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda says talks between the government and the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) are not about power sharing. He says the talks are aimed to provide the rebels with a choice of villages in where they want to settle. Meanwhile, the government negotiating team led by Internal Affairs Minister Ruhakana Rugunda has returned to the country to hold consultations and review discussions with President Museveni. Rugunda spoke with VOA English to Africa reporter Peter Clottey about the peace talks.
“The first objectives of the discussions include to end the conflict that has been going on for quite sometime. Secondly, is to give a soft landing to the people who have been in the bush fighting against the government and thirdly is to integrate them in society. We will give them amnesty and let them play a direct full role in society like any other Ugandan as guaranteed by the constitution of Uganda.”
Rugunda says, “If after having discussions for about ten days, the moment was reached when it was necessary both sides are to consult their principles and consequently the team has moved to near Garamba to be able to consult with the rebel leaders and the Uganda government delegation have come to Kampala to consult with president Museveni and the government of Uganda and basically brief the two parties on the progress so far made at the talks.”
The Ugandan minister says the talks have been positive so far. “The talks did have a rather difficult beginning but after some day’s situation settled down and good discussions have taken place and progress made. So the talks are really on course.”
He says, “The discussions are due to resume next Monday. As to how long it will last, really there is no date fixed. It will depend on the progress that will be made.”
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