UN peacekeeping mission in DRC under threat as withdrawal is discussed

March 23, 2015 OPINION/NEWS

munusco

 

By

Sylvain Muyali

 

At a meeting of the UN Security Council in New York last week, the issue of United Nations peacekeeping mission MONUSCO and its presence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo was under discussion.

For the Congolese Minister of Foreign Affairs Raymond Tshibanda, the time has come for DRC to fully assume its responsibilities for security.

He firmly requested that the Council respect this legitimate ‘aspiration’, which pointed to the sovereignty of his country.

The minister praised the political and economic progress made by his government and major advances of government forces against Rwandan Hutu rebels (FDLR) in eastern parts of the country.

More than anything he acknowledged that there were still pockets of insecurity maintained by Ugandan terrorists in and around Beni, in the province of North Kivu, and by the FDLR located in North and South Kivu. Everywhere else in the country, peace and security prevail, he added.

Special representative of the Secretary General of the UN, Martin Kobler, has identified the political, security and humanitarian situation in the DRC. This, according to him, is relatively stable thanks to the efforts of the Congolese government with the support of MONUSCO.

For the head of MONUSCO, many things have already been done in the field. although much remains to be done to further stabilize the DRC, requesting a renewal of the mandate of the UN mission.

“We are here to serve the people. We are also here to offer our services to the Government. Our willingness to leave the country is real and unequivocal. The departure of MONUSCO should be linked to outcomes and concrete improvement in the situation on the ground” Kobler stated.

“MONUSCO will not remain forever in the DRC”, he said, but he still has “work to do to reduce the threat of armed groups and violence against civilians to a manageable level by the Congolese State.”

According to diplomats, the Council plans to cut 2,000 staff from MONUSCO, while Kinshasa demanded the withdrawal of 6,000 peacekeepers.

 

 

sylvain muyali

Sylvain Muyali

Sylvain Muyali is a Journalist, Photographer and Filmmaker from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. He has reported previously for the Associated Press and his words and images can also be found at ‘Vivons Positivement

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