Angola: UN envoy hails new government peace initiative

Angola: UN envoy hails new government peace initiative

Hours after the Angolan Government announced a new 15-point “Declaration” concerning the peace process, the United Nations chief envoy for the country welcomed it as a generous and inclusive move.

Mussagy Jeichande, Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s Representative and Head of the UN Office in Angola, praised the plan for contemplating fundamental themes like the cessation of hostilities, amnesty and elections.

“It is a conciliatory plan and above all it has the great merit of envisioning the contribution by all living forces of Angolan society,” Mr. Jeichande told the press in Lusaka immediately after an audience with the Angolan External Relations Minister, João Miranda. “That is, it does not only talk about the two parties involved in the armed conflict but also the contribution by the civil society, churches and the international community.”

The UN envoy said he was pleased that his calls on the Government to be “magnanimous” had been heard and stressed that the plan had created a “historic opportunity for conquering definitive peace” in Angola. “It is imperative that this opportunity not be wasted. We hope that the cessation of hostilities will – in the short-term – lead to a definitive ceasefire,” he said.

Mr. Jeichande said the United Nations remained committed to supporting the Angolan people in their efforts to build peace, well-being and democracy, in accordance with the terms of the Lusaka Protocol and Security Council resolutions.