News / Africa

Congo Ready to Sign Document Formalizing Rebel Defeat

FILE - A Congolese army soldier responds to cheers from civilians as the army enters the town of Bunagana, eastern Congo, near the border with Uganda, Oct. 30, 2013. FILE - A Congolese army soldier responds to cheers from civilians as the army enters the town of Bunagana, eastern Congo, near the border with Uganda, Oct. 30, 2013.
x
FILE - A Congolese army soldier responds to cheers from civilians as the army enters the town of Bunagana, eastern Congo, near the border with Uganda, Oct. 30, 2013.
FILE - A Congolese army soldier responds to cheers from civilians as the army enters the town of Bunagana, eastern Congo, near the border with Uganda, Oct. 30, 2013.
TEXT SIZE - +
— The Democratic Republic of Congo said on Wednesday it was ready to sign a “declaration” that reflects the defeat of M23 rebels, despite pulling out of Ugandan-hosted peace talks a day earlier.
 
Congo and M23 rebels, the latest incarnation of Tutsi-led insurgents to battle the government near the border with Rwanda and Uganda, had been due to conclude a deal on Monday but Congolese negotiators rejected the name of the document.
 
Kinshasa's accusations against Uganda and the failure to conclude a political deal to accompany M23's military defeat underscored deep-rooted tensions that will complicate efforts to end Congo's most serious rebellion in a decade.
 
Saying it would not sign a deal with a group its U.N.-backed army had already defeated, Congo demanded a simple declaration from the rebels that they would not take up arms - and again accused Uganda mediators of taking sides.
 
The M23 said the document arranging the terms for an end to its 20-month uprising had been agreed upon days in advance.
 
“We will not sign anything that is contradictory to our national interests,” Congolese government spokesman Lambert Mende said on Wednesday. “If that is understood, we will return to Kampala and we will sign a declaration.”
 
“False and unhelpful"
 
Uganda rejected charges of bias in favor of M23, saying Congo had made no formal complaint in 10 months of mediation.
 
“Thus we take this accusation by Mr Mende as unfair, unfounded, false and unhelpful to the peace process in Congo,” Ofwono Opondo, a spokesman for Uganda's government, told a news conference in Kampala.
 
U.N. experts have accused Uganda and Rwanda of backing the rebels during the uprising. Both countries deny the charge.
 
Last November, M23 rebels occupied Goma, a town of a million people and the capital of North Kivu province. They withdrew under intense diplomatic pressure that led to the opening of talks in Uganda.
 
However, the fall of Goma led to a revamping of Congo's army and the strengthening of the U.N. force and its mandate in Congo. When peace talks faltered, rebels were driven from all the remaining towns they occupied in recent weeks.
 
Uganda is holding Sultani Makenga, M23's military commander, and several other rebels who fled the government offensive.
 
Mende complained that Uganda had not handed Makenga over to Congolese authorities, as agreed under a regional agreement signed in Addis Ababa earlier this year.
 
“Makenga is not in a terra incognita. He is not in the desert,” said Mende. “If he returns to the path of war, we will know that it is Uganda which has put him on that path against the Congo and there will be consequences.”
 
The Addis Ababa deal called on Congo to push through reforms but also called for an end to external meddling in Congo's conflicts, which have often sucked in armies of foreign states.
 
Opondo said Uganda would not hand Makenga over to Kinshasa. Once an agreement was signed with M23, its commander could be turned in to the United Nations or the African Union, he said.

You May Like

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

Turkish Law Gives Spy Agency Controversial Powers

Parliament approves legislation to bolster powers of intelligence service, which government claims is necessary to modernize and deal with new threats Turkey faces More

Video Face of American Farmer Changing

Average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Bob Mendell from: Chanzu, Congo
November 14, 2013 12:35 PM
M23 fighters accused of flagrant human rights abuses not hesitating to cross the border to Uganda for a safe haven and the Uganda government providing them safe haven disqualify Uganda as an impartial broker. Therefore the "Kampala Talks" have no legitimacy and constitute an exercise of futility aka a joke!

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Face of American Farmer is Changingi
X
Mike Osborne
April 18, 2014
The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid