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DRC: UN Envoy Preaches Peace As Guns Roar

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approved http://celesteanddanielle.com/wp-admin/includes/class-language-pack-upgrader-skin.php geneva;”>She also underscored her strong support for all efforts underway at this time to bring peace and stability to the region.

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“The suffering and displacement of the people, especially women and children, in eastern DRC and beyond have gone on for too long and cannot be tolerated any further,” the Special Envoy said.


The Special Envoy issued her comments on Tuesday in proposing a set of principles to guide immediate efforts to tackle the crisis in the region, while maintaining a focus on long-term solutions.


The proposals are informed by her recently concluded first visit to the region as the United Nations Special Envoy for the Great Lakes.


The Special Envoy urged the DRC and all other parties to implement their commitments under a recently adopted framework agreement with a focus on a peaceful solution to the crisis in the eastern DRC and the region.


Robinson’s statement comes at a time of increased clashes between DRC forces and M23 Movement in Eastern Congo.


The DRC security crisis continued to deepen on Tuesday, with Congolese national army, FARDC, stepping up attacks on rebel M23 Movement positions


M23 publicist Vianney Kazarama said a gun battle ensued today morning when Rwandan Hutu rebels of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) took an M23 position at Mutaho.


“When our troops went to fetch water, they found that the wells were already under attack by the FDLR. We chased them away,” said Kazarama.


He further noted that “at 6am, the FARDC began shelling our positions, backed by ground troops who were shooting with light arms.”


Deadly clashes started on Monday with FARDC and FDLR attacking M23 bases in Kanyarucinya.


The rebel Movement said it managed to push the allied government forces back up to Muja.


M23 officials said FDLR and FARDC were planning to launch an attack from Tongo in Rutshuru on M23 positions.


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Nevertheless, Kazarama notes that the fighting had since died down.

“But comrade Bertrand Bisimwa our political leader warned that if shooting continues, we will have to silence the guns”.


Meanwhile, more reports show that at least 3 heavily-armed regiments of FARDC have been stationed in Goma. Heavy artillery is being used to shell M23 bases, creating a climate of fear and uncertainty in the region.


Kazarama said the United Nations Brigade is now very likely to partner with the negative forces.


“The DRC army itself renowned for rape wherever it goes is a negative force. FARDC has built an alliance with FDLR (Rwanda Hutu militias) to fight M23.

Will the UN Brigade join and fight alongside FDLR who are FARDC’s partners?” wondered Kazarama.


M23 expressed shock that while they requested Kabila for talks, “instead we are being bombed; M23 boys are outraged.”


The fighting is a result of the collapse of peace talks between the two antagonistic camps in Kampala.


The DRC representatives last month left their hotel rooms in Kampala before flying back to Kinshasha. M23 followed suit, returning to Bunagana.


The M23 had captured Goma last year but pulled out due to international pressure and intervention of leaders in the Great Lakes region.


The DRC army faced a mutiny last year in April, with M23 accusing Kabila of gross human rights abuses, rigging the Presidential election and massive segregation and entrenched corruption in the army.


Robinson said any agreements reached between the parties should contribute to breaking the cycle of violence and impunity for human rights abuses.


The Special Envoy also called for actions to accelerate the voluntary return of refugees and to re-launch of programs to demobilize foreign and Congolese armed groups.


She pledged to work with governments, donors and civil society to pursue a peace that creates dividends for the peoples of the region.


The Special Envoy joins UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon and World Bank Group President Dr. Jim Yong Kim on their upcoming joint visit to the DRC, Rwanda and Uganda from 22-24 May.

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