UNSC Calls For Immediate M23 Disarmament

The United Nations Security Council has called for the immediate and permanent disarmament of the March 23 movement (M23) rebel group in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
The M23 rebel group in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo before they were defeated.
The M23 rebel group in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo before they were defeated.

On Thursday, Liu Jieyi of China, who holds the council’s presidency in November, said that the council “calls for…the disarmament and demobilization of the M23 and accountability for human rights abusers.”

On Wednesday, Abdallah Wafi, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s deputy special representative to Congo, said the country should prepare a plan to disarm, demobilize and reintegrate former rebels M23.

He made the remarks a week after the UN mission in Congo, known as MONUSCO, helped the Congolese army defeat the 18-month-old M23 insurgency.

Wafi said the measure, which he called DDR plan, is key to ensure peace and security in the country’s violence-ridden east.

On November 5, the M23 announced an end to their revolt after a bruising offensive by the Congolese army and UN forces.

M23 leader Bertrand Bisimwa said in a statement that the group would disarm and pursue political talks.

The M23 rebels seized Goma on November 20, 2012 after UN peacekeepers gave up the battle for the frontier city of one million people. M23 rebels withdrew from the city on December 1 under a ceasefire accord.

The M23 rebels defected from the Congolese army in April 2012 in protest over alleged mistreatment in the army. They had previously been integrated into the Congolese army under a peace deal signed in 2009.

Since early May 2012, nearly three million people have fled their homes in the eastern Congo. About 2.5 million have resettled in Congo, but about 500,000 have crossed into neighboring Rwanda and Uganda.

Congo has faced numerous problems over the past few decades, such as grinding poverty, crumbling infrastructure, and a war in the east of the country that has dragged on since 1998 and left over 5.5 million people dead.

Press TV

Enable Notifications    OK No thanks
Close Bitnami banner
Bitnami