Mozambique: Conditions Prepared for Dialogue With Renamo

Maputo – The Mozambican government declared, in a statement issued by the Council of Ministers (Cabinet), that it has established “the logistical and security conditions” to re-establish dialogue with the rebel movement Renamo “without pre-conditions”. The promotion of dialogue with all the live forces of society is one of the main commitments of the Mozambican government , in order to contribute to the consolidation of national unity, peace and the well-being of the Mozambican people”, the statement declared.

Last week, after a meeting of the National Defence and Security Council (CNDS), President Filipe Nyusi set up a three member team to prepare a meeting with Renamo leader Afonso Dhlakama. Concerns about his personal security were among the excuses used by Dhlakama for not accepting Nyusi’s invitation for talks.

However, this is far from the only hurdle erected by Renamo. Thus Dhlakama has refused to name a team of his own to prepare the meeting, and demands, as a pre-condition, that the government accept foreign mediation.

Dhlakama wants any future talks mediated by the Catholic Church, the European Union and South African president Jacob Zuma. But the government has consistently argued that foreign mediation is unnecessary in a dispute among Mozambicans.

As for the Mozambicans who have fled from the western province of Tete into Malawi, and who now number around 11,000, the government said it is coordinating with national and international specialist institutions, to guarantee humanitarian assistance, as well as to ensure their return and settlement in Mozambique.

The government also promised to investigate the alleged violations of human rights by the defence and security forces. Some of the refugees have told reporters that members of the armed forces burnt down their homes and barns.

The statement said the government is committed “to continue working with all segments of society to understand what these violations of human rights consist of, and to take appropriate measures in the light of the law”.

The government added that it is “strengthening the measures seeking to consolidate the rule of law, in order to guarantee continual respect for the fundamental rights and freedoms of citizens”.

The statement condemned the attacks by gunmen of the rebel movement Renamo against civilian targets and police units, and once again urged Renamo to hand over its weapons voluntarily to the defence and security forces.

Source All Africa