UN peacekeeping chief arrives in DRC following reopening of international flights

August 19, 2015 OPINION/NEWS




Sylvain Muyali

Arriving earlier at Goma on an Ethiopian Airlines plane, Martin Kobler, Special Representative of the United Nations peacekeeping mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo, MONUSCO, could not hide his delight at the airport’s recent progress in the eastern part of the DRC, once a crossroads of insecurity.

“I am very happy to travel with Ethiopian Airlines” said Mr Kobler to local press on the tarmac at Goma International Airport. ”I return to Addis Ababa, where I attended a meeting with Deputy Secretary General Jan Eliasson on the DRC”

“We had to address the big issues hitting the headlines in the DRC, including the organisation of legislative and presidential elections next year, the sliding of attempts and the likelihood of a dialogue between the Congolese if it will be the sole purpose of having legislative and presidential elections eased” Kobler added.

At a press conference given to the local press in the VIP room of the airport terminal of MONUSCO, Martin Kobler argued that the UN mission continues to believe in the good will of the Congolese leaders to organise legislative and presidential elections within the constitutional deadline.

We are in the month of August 2015, there is still time to prepare for the parliamentary and presidential elections next year and enroll new leaders” Kobler stated.

Martin Kobler, however, informed the press that MONUSCO remains ready to offer its office for political dialogue between the opposition and majority if it transpires to be the will of the Congolese political class that all political tendencies as a prerequisite for the organisation of credible legislative and presidential elections, are democratic and transparent within the constitutional deadline. He also congratulated the Congolese government for managing to create mechanisms towards the consolidation of peace through economic recovery.

The head of MONUSCO, in this vein, thanked the German funds donors who participated in the work on Goma International Airport, welcoming the visit of the German Minister of Cooperation Mr Schneider in Goma a few weeks ago. “I estimated that flights from Ethiopian Airlines would take place because it is an act of economic recovery; something we have to participate in” emphasised Mr Kobler. With regard to the latter, having international flights from Goma is a strong signal of economic recovery.


The inhabitants of Goma will now openly be free to travel to and from East Africa now with these flights from Ethiopian Airlines. Hand in hand, Martin Kobler believes the government, with the support of donors, can improve the living conditions of people to the east of the DRC with the installation of agricultural feeder roads in the formerly occupied territories by armed groups that are now areas of stability.





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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