Angola: UN envoy holds talks on recent ceasefire agreement with UNITA

Angola: UN envoy holds talks on recent ceasefire agreement with UNITA

Ibrahim Gambari (right) & General Paulo Lukamba
A top United Nations envoy for Africa today met with a delegation from the rebel National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA) for talks on the recent ceasefire agreement with the Government, including a discussion on the lifting of UN sanctions, which include a travel ban on the group's leaders.

UN Under Secretary-General Ibrahim Gambari, who is Secretary-General Kofi Annan's Special Adviser for Africa, told journalists that the main objectives of his mission to Luanda were to deliver a message from Mr. Annan to President dos Santos and to witness the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding that had brought about the ceasefire.

Mr. Gambari added that he also intended to consult all parties involved in the peace process and clarify the role of the UN, and encourage all the positive developments and make peace "irreversible."

Gen. Paulo Lukamba, or "Gato," who led the UNITA delegation, told the media that it was "essential" that the group be allowed to travel because it needed the help of its External Mission.