The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Cooperation, Rosemary Museminali, has appealed to the countries in the Great Lakes region for support in eradicating FDRL forces currently holed up in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.
Speaking on Monday at the regional inter-ministerial meeting of International Conference of Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) in Lusaka, Zambia Museminali said that “It is very important that the statesmanship exhibited by the two presidents in looking beyond the past problems for the sake of bringing peace in the region should be recognized,” Museminali stated.
Museminali was referring to the recent presidential summit in Goma that brought together Presidents Paul Kagame of Rwanda and Joseph Kabila of DRC.
Museminali, called upon all member states not to concentrate on symptoms but rather pull much effort on uprooting the causes of the violence that has gone on in the region for many years.
She called for better coordination and harmonisation of the ICGLR activities in order to be more effective.
Rwanda was applauded for working tirelessly to improve its relations with DRC especially the joint military operation (Umoja Wetu) between the two countries.
The summit was hailed as a sign of commitment to improve relations for security and sustainable development of the region.
President Mwai Kibaki of Kenya praised President Paul Kagame and his DRC counterpart, Joseph Kabila, for last week’s move to restore diplomatic ties between the two countries after years of strained relations.
“A joint border meeting between the Presidents of the DRC and Rwanda took place last week and new diplomatic relations are in sight between the two countries,” Kibaki said.
The third ICGLR Heads of State and government summit will discuss and review developments and progress made in the region since the last two meetings held in 2004 and 2006.
It will also discuss the status of the implementation of the pact on security, stability and development in the Great Lakes Region signed during the second Summit of the heads of state and government held in Nairobi in December 2006, where the leaders signed a Pact of Security, Stability and Development that in-turn set the stage for the implementation of the programs of action and projects and protocols.
ICGLR is an Intergovernmental Organisation bringing together eleven countries; Angola, Burundi, Central African Republic, the Republic of Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Sudan, the United Republic of Tanzania and Zambia.