After days of heavy fighting between the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and renegade General Laurent Nkunda, the two sides reached an agreement on Thursday (9-6-07) to observe a cease-fire. The two sides have reportedly agreed to solve their differences through dialogue. On Friday a Rwandan diplomat raised concerns that the recent violence in the North Kivu province of the DRC could threaten his country’s security. Francois Grignon is Africa Program Director for the International Crisis Group. Nightline’s Akwei Thompson reached him by phone in his office in Nairobi, Kenya to discuss the situation in North Kivu.
Mignon said the situation is very fragile. “We have two parties who have had limited victories and defeats…and there is still a lot of tension.”
He predicted “there is no military solution to the problems of North Kivu, and there will be no winner; all parties will be losers.”
He said, ultimately the civilian population will pay the price for this conflict, given “the protracted positions from the insurgents and the government.”
Grignon sees the up coming talks in arusha, Tanzania between Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni and his Congolese counterpart, Joseph Kabila. as crucial
“It’s very important because, the solution to the stability of North Kivu will partly depend on the stabilization of relations between Kinshasa and Kigali…”