ADDIS ABABA - Heads of State from the Great Lakes countries have called on the UN Security Council to pass a specific resolution establishing sanctions against the Ex-Far/Interahamwe militia.
The militia now calls itself the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR), and is one of the groups declared by Washington and regional states as negative forces.
The call was made on Wednesday after a one-day meeting between the US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Presidents Paul Kagame, Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, Burundi’s Pierre Nkurunziza and DRC’s State Minister for Interior Denis Kalume.
The Tripartite Plus Joint Commission summit was held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
The same appeal was made in a November 9 agreement between Rwanda and DRC, under which the latter committed itself to forcefully disarm the rebels who are largely blamed for the 1994 Rwanda Genocide which claimed at least one million people.
The Addis Ababa meeting, according to a communiqué issued by the US State Department yesterday, called for full implementation of the Rwanda-DRC accord, which also saw Kinshasa submit to Kigali a detailed plan to disarm the FDLR rebels who are estimated to be between 6,000 and 10,000. The plan of action, which Kigali has to enrich was forwarded on December 1 as the UN-brokered agreement signed in Nairobi, Kenya stipulated.
The Wednesday meeting also agreed that the presidents should meet again soon to consider the next step on the planned operations against the ex-FAR/Interahamwe.
‘Regional leaders took note of the DRC’s intention and determination to end the threat posed by the Ex-FAR/Interahamwe through implementation of the plan, including political/ diplomatic means and accompanying public information and sensitisation campaigns, and through military operations planned to begin in mid-March and to be completed with urgency,’ the statement said.
Tripartite Plus member states also expressed their support to the DRC government in its efforts to end the threat posed by irregular Congolese armed groups, in particular the forces including the Mai-Mai and General Laurent Nkunda’s troops.