AU requests Angolan President to mediate talks between Rwanda and DRC

On 31 October 2022 at 10:18

The African Union (AU) has called for dialogue to mend relations between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) amidst reciprocal accusations related to Congolese Army (FARDC)’s fighting with M23 rebel group.

The request was made through a joint statement released on Sunday by Senegalese President, Macky Sall who also serves as the incumbent AU Chairperson and Moussa Faki Mahamat, the Chairperson of the AU Commission following DRC’s decision to expel Rwanda’s Ambassador, Vincent Karega.

The decision was reached through a High Defence Council chaired by President Felix Tshisekedi on Saturday.

It was taken at a time when Congolese Army (FARDC) continues to loose bases to M23 rebel group and attributes its strength to alleged support from Rwanda.

Rwanda has however denied the allegations repeatedly calling the fight with M23 an internal problem which should be addressed by DRC without externalizing its matters.

Expelling Rwanda’s envoy has further worsened the situation and considered as a major setback on efforts and peaceful processes established through regional and international frameworks to mend relations between the two neighbouring states and secure eastern DRC.

In a statement released on Sunday, Macky Sall and Moussa Faki Mahamat expressed concerns over deteriorating security situation in eastern DRC.

They also called on concerned parties for immediate cease fire, respect international laws, the safety and security of civilians and the stability at borders of all countries in the region.

Mack Sall and Mahamat has requested the fighting sides to opt for constructive dialogue within the existing mechanism of the African Union’s Peace. Security and Cooperation Framework for the DRC and the region and the East African Community’s Inter-Congolese peace dialogue.

In this regard, both Sall and Mahamat have called on all the parties to participate ’in good faith in the third Inter-Congolese peace dialogue in Nairobi form 4th to 13th November 2022’.

The dialogue convenes DRC with some armed groups but the country recently withdrew interests from talks with M23 which it considered as ‘a terrorist group’.

Meanwhile, M23 accuses Congo of failure to implement peace accords signed in 2013.

The statement also indicates that President Sall and Mahamat support the Luanda Roadmap aimed at normalizing relations between Rwanda and DRC.

“They encourage President Joao Lourenço in his mission as a facilitator of a constructive dialogue between the two brother countries, DRC and Rwanda,” concludes the statement.

Rwanda accuses DRC of working with the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR), a terrorist group formed by individuals responsible for the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.

Rwanda also alleges that the coalition of Congolese Army and FDLR continues to approach Rwanda’s border with heavy weapons

In a statement released on Sunday following DRC’s decision to expel Amb. Karega, Rwanda said that it is monitoring the situation in the neighbouring country adding that Rwandan security forces at the border are standby amidst the worsening situation.

On Sunday, President Félix Antoine Tshisekedi Tshilombo received Angolan Minister of Foreign Affairs, Tete Antonio as a special envoy of President Joao Lourenço.

DRC’s Presidency has disclosed that the envoy’s message is centered on bilateral relations and security problems in eastern Congo.

The African Union has requested Angolan President to mediate talks between Rwanda and DRC.