News / Africa

    African Union Monitoring Congo, Rebel Peace Talks

    DRC Foreign Minister Raymond Tshibanda (L) and M23 Spokesman Rene Abandi discuss the situation, at DRC peace talks in Kampala, Uganda, Sept. 17. (VOA/A. Hall)
    DRC Foreign Minister Raymond Tshibanda (L) and M23 Spokesman Rene Abandi discuss the situation, at DRC peace talks in Kampala, Uganda, Sept. 17. (VOA/A. Hall)
    Peter Clottey
    The African Union (AU) is monitoring security in the Democratic Republic of Congo following the breakdown of a peace deal between the government and the M23 rebels, according to Erastus Mwencha, deputy AU chairman.

    He expressed concern over the security situation in the north eastern part of the DRC, where the recent clashes between UN-backed government troops (FARDC) and the M23 left scores dead and thousands internally displaced.

    “It is really a matter of concern that with the hopes that have been created, the agreement would have been signed. This is perhaps something that both parties concerned should consider going back to the table for the sake of the people, for the sake of women, [and] children who have suffered in that part of Africa,” said Mwencha.  “The people and the leaders themselves are concerned that this conflict has gone for far too long, and the sooner we can reach this agreement, the better. 

    Last week, envoys from the AU, the United Nations, Europe and the United States expressed regret that an agreement was not signed. In a statement, the envoys said the two sides have not expressed any differences on substantive points within the draft document.

    The M23 announced it was laying down its arms, after the Congolese army seized the last of the group's strongholds in Congo’s North Kivu province.                   

    Mwencha said the AU special envoy for the Great Lakes region is also monitoring the ongoing peace talks in Uganda’s capital, Kampala, to find ways of peacefully ending the conflict and restoring peace and stability.

    “We are very much concerned, and this concern of course is not just simply that the agreement has not been reached, but we missed many opportunities, time and again, while people are suffering and while the economy continues to suffer, and while there are crimes that need to be pursued,” said Mwencha.

    Parts of DRC’s east have seen years of conflict between the government’s army, FARDC and various rebel groups, who compete for control over the area’s rich mines and natural resources.

    Mwencha said the AU is working with its international partners to help the government in Kinshasa defeat the various armed groups as well as maintain security and its territorial integrity.

    “We hope that peace would be secured, and that peace will require commitment of the parties concerned to enable the region [to] focus on development,” said Mwencha.
    Clottey interview with Erastus Mwencha, AU deputy chairman
    Clottey interview with Erastus Mwencha, AU deputy chairmani
    || 0:00:00
    ...    
     
    X

    You May Like

    Mother of IS Supporter: Son Was Peaceful, 'Role Model'

    Somali-American Abdirizak Mohamed Warsame pleaded guilty Thursday to charges of conspiring to provide material support to Islamic State militants

    Factions Shift as Civilians Die in Syrian War

    Scenario likely only to further confuse military situation on ground and potentially worsen humanitarian crisis that already has grown to epic proportions

    Presidential Hopefuls Woo Minorities, Evangelicals

    Four GOP candidates to speak at forum at Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Anonymous
    November 18, 2013 10:19 PM
    Who is fooling who? The African Union can fool no one. The AU is in the pockets of Autocrats and dictators and has no teeth to solve anything in a sensible way. The other day they sent Kagame and Museveni to ask ICC to defer the case against Kenyatta! I.e they wanted to cover him from answering for crimes in Kenya! Now they turn around and pretend to care about DRC population that has suffered genocide under the hands of the the "Rwanda/Uganda military regimes or warlords that call impose themselves there as presidents through oppression and the most shoddy elections!" The AU if it were serious would be pressing charges against Kagame, Kabarebe and Museveni and sending them to ICC too for aiding, ordering & abetting crimes in DRC since the early 1990's when they started wrecking havoc in DRC in all sorts of ways via militia, terror on populations,including their armies turning onto each other in DRC to fight for mineral control,loot and plunder. UN/SADC/DRC should not get complaisant, the M23 criminals just went back to base in the Uganda and Rwanda army/militia lThe likes of Makenga have VIP treatment across the border and the warlords/presidents protecting them will not hand them over without much pressure from UN/US/UK-the real masters over these buffoonish regimes that look for favor from the West by manipulating the West through geopolitical interests of the West. Uganda and Rwanda are a safe haven for all the M23 terrorists & other bandits that have committed crimes against humanity in DRC and left plenty of Mass graves even more recently.
    The narrow view of the West needs to change and stop dealing with buffoons or puppets but instead support good credible leaders/nations like Kikweete/Tanzania that are have more stable credible governance and are more progressive for their people and the region.
    In Response

    by: Rems from: TEXAS, USA
    November 21, 2013 1:28 AM
    Beautifully & Clearly said! They are only fooling themselves now.

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortagei
    X
    February 12, 2016 7:31 PM
    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortage

    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Gateway to Mecca: Historical Old Jeddah

    Local leader Sami Nawar's family has been in the Old City of Jeddah for hundreds of years and takes us on a tour of this ancient route to Mecca, also believed to be the final resting place of Adam's wife, Eve.
    Video

    Video New Technology Aims to Bring Election Transparency to Uganda

    A team of recent graduates from Uganda’s Makerere University has created a mobile application designed to help monitor elections and expose possible rigging. The developers say the app, called E-Poll, will make Uganda's democratic process fairer. From Kampala, VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
    Video

    Video As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Fill

    Aid workers on the Greek island of Lesbos say they are struggling to bury the increasing number of bodies of refugees that have been recovered or washed up ashore in recent months.  The graveyards are all full, they say, yet as tens of thousands of people clamor to get out of Syria, it is clear refugees will still be coming in record numbers. For VOA, Hamada Elrasam reports from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video Russia Bristles at NATO Expansion in E. Europe

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is meeting Friday with the head of NATO after the Western military alliance and the United States announced plans for the biggest military build-up in Europe since the Cold War. Russia has called NATO's moves a threat to stability in Europe. But NATO says the troop rotations and equipment are aimed at reassuring allies concerned about Russia as VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video To Fight Zika, Scientists Target Mosquitoes

    Mosquitoes strike again. The Zika virus outbreak is just the latest headline-grabbing epidemic carried by these biting pests, but researchers are fighting back with new ways to control them. VOA's Steve Baragona takes a look.
    Video

    Video Mosul Refugees Talk About Life Under IS

    A top U.S. intelligence official told Congress this week that a planned Iraqi-led operation to re-take the city of Mosul from Islamic State militants is unlikely to take place this year. IS took over the city in June 2014, and for the past year and a half, Mosul residents have been held captive under its rule. VOA's Zana Omar talked to some families who managed to escape. Bronwyn Benito narrates his report.
    Video

    Video Scientists Make Progress Toward Better Diabetes Treatment, Cure

    Scientists at two of the top U.S. universities say they have made significant advances in their quest to find a more efficient treatment for diabetes and eventually a cure. According to the International Diabetes Federation, the disease affects more than 370 million people worldwide. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video NATO to Target Migrant Smugglers

    NATO has announced plans to send warships to the Aegean Sea to target migrant smugglers in the alliance's most direct intervention so far since a wave of people began trying to reach European shores.
    Video

    Video Russia's Catholics, Orthodox Hopeful on Historic Pope-Patriarch Meeting

    Russia's Catholic minority has welcomed an historic first meeting Friday in Cuba between the Pope and the Patriarch of Russia's dominant Orthodox Church. The Orthodox Church split with Rome in 1054 and analysts say politics, both church and state, have been driving the relationship in the centuries since. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Used Books Get a New Life on the Streets of Lagos

    Used booksellers are importing books from abroad and selling them on the streets of Africa's largest city. What‘s popular with readers may surprise you. Chris Stein reports from Lagos.
    Video

    Video After NH Primaries All Eyes on South Carolina

    After Tuesday's primary in New Hampshire, US presidential candidates swiftly turned to the next election coming up in South Carolina. The so-called “first-in-the-South” poll may help further narrow down the field of candidates. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video Smartphone Helps Grow Vegetables

    One day, you may be using your smartphone to grow your vegetables. A Taipei-based company has developed a farm cube — a small, enclosed ecosystem designed to grow plants indoors. The environment inside is automatically adjusted by the cube, but it can also be controlled through an app. VOA's Deborah Block has more on the gardening system.
    Video

    Video Exhibit Turns da Vinci’s Drawings Into Real Objects

    In addition to being a successful artist, Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci designed many practical machines, some of which are still in use today, although in different forms. But a number of his projects were never realized — until today. VOA’s George Putic reports.