DRC-EAC: en route to the establishment of a monitoring and verification mechanism in eastern DRC

DRC-EAC: en route to the establishment of a monitoring and verification mechanism in eastern DRC

The East African community plans to send a monitoring and verification mechanism to eastern DRC, a mécanism so crucial to end conflicts, said a press release published on the EAC website on Friday. In a summit of Heads of State earlier this month, the chiefs of defense forces of EAC member states decided to set up a team to follow up on the implementation of the recommendations from the heads of States summit which took place in the commercial city of Burundi, Bujumbura. INFO SOS Médias Burundi

At the beginning of February, the EAC Heads of State met in Bujumbura in a summit convened urgently by President Ndayishimiye, at the same time President-in-Office of the EAC.

This extraordinary summit on the security situation in eastern Congo had decided on an immediate ceasefire, the withdrawal of armed groups from the occupied territories and a dialogue between the parties in conflict. The Chiefs of Staff of the Community forces had also decided to set up a monitoring and verification team.

“I welcome the decision by the Chiefs of Defence Forces of deploying the EAC-MVM to
monitor and verify the ceasefire and withdrawal by all Armed Groups. ” specifies a press release published this Friday, by the Secretariat of the EAC, on the site of the economic bloc.

According to this press release, the Secretariat has been working on this over the past few days, with all member countries and all parties concerned, to accelerate the deployment of this mechanism “which will play a central role to bring hostilities to an end”.

“The EAC Secretariat’s support for restoration of peace and stability in Eastern DRC is
unwavering,” the document said.

The East African community that Congo joined last year has already deployed troops in certain areas of armed conflict in the eastern region of the DRC, including several territories in the province of North Kivu.

But this force is denounced by some Congolese actors, accusing it of being “ineffective, complicit and partial” as it does not take action to attack the M23, an armed group which has recovered several localities in this province since mid-June 2022. Several demonstrations have been organized in the provinces of North Kivu and South Kivu, in particular as part of “indicating the presence of the troops and demanding their departure”.

During the Bujumbura summit, President Tshisekedi was seen in a video speaking out against the EAC force and its commander as well.

“You did not come to support the M23 and it is very unfortunate that the population is attacking you. You came to help us, you did not come to have problems. So be really attentive to that, be attentive to that. Answer the questions of the population, communicate with the population”, insisted the Congolese head of state, addressing Kenyan general Jeff Nyagah in the presence of his Kenyan counterpart William Ruto.

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