President meets UN envoys over DRC

KIGALI - President Paul Kagame yesterday held talks with the new UN Undersecretary General for Peacekeeping Operations, Alain Le Roy, on the current crisis unfolding in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Alan Doss and Alain Le Roy. (Photo PPU).
Alan Doss and Alain Le Roy. (Photo PPU).

KIGALI - President Paul Kagame yesterday held talks with the new UN Undersecretary General for Peacekeeping Operations, Alain Le Roy, on the current crisis unfolding in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Speaking after meeting Kagame, Le Roy said that it is the mandate of the United Nations Mission in the DRC (MONUC) to disarm the Forces for the Democratic Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) - Interahamwe.

“This is clearly the mandate that MONUC has received from the Security Council to assist the FARDC in disarming rebel groups including of course the FDLR/ Interahamwe…” Le Roy emphasised.

He made these comments while responding to concerns that MONUC and the DRC government have failed to disarm the FDLR-Interahamwe.

Le Roy said the plan to disarm the FDLR was supposed to be implemented as from last September. However, the plan has since failed to get off the ground.

The representative of the UN in Congo who is also the head of MONUC, Alan Doss, also attended the meeting with Kagame, said that they believe that in light of recent events, the plan that had been adopted should be updated.

“We believe the plan should still go ahead … we would want to update it now in light of recent events…” Doss said.

He further explained the need to get the political discussions going and also admitted that the whole process had not gone as previously planned.

The MONUC head also revealed that he has raised the issue of FDLR several times adding that it is in all reports of the UN Secretary General to the Security Council.

Foreign Affairs Minister, Rosemary Museminali, who also attended the meeting said the President told the UN representatives that the DRC crisis was an internal problem but that the international community has a role in the resolution of the problems there.

She revealed that Rwanda can only assist in the resolution of the DRC problem after the country and the international community have clearly described what contribution Rwanda can make. She added that it is clear that the problem can be resolved peacefully rather than opting for a military solution.

Museminali noted that what will come out of the proposed Nairobi Summit on Friday, will depend on whether the problem is dealt with from its root causes.

She said that, “the inability of the Congolese authorities to deal with FDLR, which has been spreading and in a way bringing out more viciousness in all the problems you are seeing there,” is the root cause of the current problem.

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