The African Union has suggested a move to form another army to DR Congo and put an end to the assault on the Kinshasa government by rebels. The statements were made yesterday morning at the opening of the 19th ordinary summit of heads of state and government by the AU commission chairman, Dr Jean Ping, days after a document was signed by the foreign ministers of scores of African states in the Great Lakes region.
A soldier from the FARDC (L) with a UN peacekeeper on Goma- Rutshuru road in North Kivu Province recently. The AU has pledged to fight M23 rebels in the area. PHOTO BY AFP
The DR Congo and its neighbour Rwanda also signed the document which proposed an internationally-backed military response to the offensive by the rebels in the North Kivu Province.
The document condemned the rebels’ advances and a rebellion by the primarily Hutu fighters of the FDLR insurgent group, most of them refugees who are accused of orchestrating the 1994 Rwandan genocide.
“The AU is ready to contribute to a regional force to put to an end crisis in the DR Congo and Mali,” Dr Ping said. Human rights reports have accused Rwanda of supporting and backing the M23 rebels in the DRC hence straining the relations between the two countries.
The UN Deputy Secretary General, Mr Jan Eliasson, also pledged UN’s support to the cause in ending assaults in DR Congo, Mali, Sudan and also Uganda’s Joseph Kony whom he said remains ‘extremely dangerous’ .
It is, however not clear where the troops will come from to establish the neutral international force that would take on the Congolese rebel groups since only Uganda and Burundi first agreed to contribute to Amisom until recently when the Kenyan government also weighed in on pressures from the al-shabbaab to enter Somalia capital Mogadishu.