THE United Nations Special Envoy to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Martin Kobler, is in New York to brief the Security Council on how his mission is faring.
Kobler’s visit is a frantic one; the UN mandate in DRC has only two weeks left. He therefore has to impress on the members the need for extending the mandate. His wish will no doubt be granted given that Monusco is no way near achieving its goals.
The pats on its back for dislodging the M23 rebels - one of the 30-plus outfits out there - have worn off. But this was just a drop in the ocean.
What about the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) which is freely roaming in eastern DRC and planning to cause havoc in the region. Recent reports coming from Goma indicate that MONUSCO is finally launching attacks against the FDLR.
But it is not the first time it has announced “imminent” attacks against the militia, the oldest and most lethal militia outfit operating in DRC.
So, why shouldn’t this latest announcement be taken with a pinch of salt? We have travelled down the same road every time Kobler briefs the UN, but as soon as he returns to his theatre of operations, Monusco guns fall silent.
New excuses usually come up until the next Security Council session. Isn’t it time the UN took Kobler and his team to task and ordered them to finish their task? A lot of water has passed under the bridge as far as FDLR is concerned.
What guarantees are in place to ensure that this time around it won’t be the usual Ping-Pong by Monusco in DRC, when the mandate is extended?