SADC praises João Lourenço’s commitment to promoting peace in Great Lakes

Angolan President João Lourenço has received praise for his role as mediator appointed by the African Union ( AU) to facilitate dialogue between the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Rwanda.

The recognition emerged from the Extraordinary Summit of the SADC Double Troika plus the Contributing Countries with personnel in the Intervention Force Brigade (FIB) held on Monday in Windhoek, Namibia.

On the other hand, the participants in summit noted, with great concern, the instability prevailing in eastern DRC and reiterated their strong condemnation against the increase in conflicts and activities of Armed Groups, including the resurgence of the M23.

Angolan mediation, in its capacity as President of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), in the conflict in eastern DRC resulted in a ceasefire agreement, as of 7 March last.

Angola plans to send a contingent of 500 soldiers from the Angolan Armed Forces (FAA) to the DRC, who are expected to remain in that country for 12 months, comprising a battalion of the FAA and respective components.

During the summit, the participants reiterated the appeal for the immediate cessation of hostilities by all Armed Groups and the unconditional withdrawal from the current occupied areas.

The Summit called for immediate regional support to the Government of the DRC to address the prevailing security situation in the east of that Great Lakes country, ahead of national elections scheduled for December 2023.

On the occasion, SADC’s support was reiterated in the fight against armed groups in the East of the DRC, to pave the way for sustainable peace, security and prosperity for the people of the DRC and the SADC region as a whole.

The event also praised the President of the DRC, Félix Antoine Tshisekedi, for the continuous support, collaboration and cooperation of SADC to obtain lasting peace and security in the east of this country.

The Summit also commended the President of Namibia, Hage Geingob, for the timely convening of the summit and for his leadership in galvanizing concerted efforts towards achieving lasting peace, security and stability in the SADC region.

The Summit was attended by the Heads of State and Government of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa, DRC Félix Antoine Tshisekedi and of Tanzania Samia Suluhu Hassan.

Also attended the meeting Angolan Minister of Foreign Affairs Téte António, on behalf of the President of the Republic of Angola, João Lourenço.

The FIB is part of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in the DRC (MONUSCO), which was deployed in 2013 as a Brigade with an operational mandate to launch offensive actions against Armed Groups and Negative Forces operating in eastern DRC.

Source: Angola Press News Agency (APNA)