Central Africa, one of the continent's most blighted regions, shows signs of hope, but its leaders must demonstrate a commitment to consolidating the gains achieved so far in order for peace to be secured, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan said today.
In a message to the UN Standing Advisory Committee on the Questions of Security in Central Africa, delivered in Bangui by Lamine Cissé, his Representative to the Central African Republic, Mr. Annan said a number of persisting conflicts in the region remain cause for concern, as do the repercussions of wars that have been settled.
At the same time, the Secretary-General called attention to positive developments in several areas, notably the rapprochement between the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and a number of its neighbours. “Another sign of hope is the evolution of the situation in Angola, where the United Nations has just created a mission to help the country’s people and Government to consolidate peace and promote economic and social development.”
The Secretary-General cautioned that these hopes would be dashed without a sincere commitment by all to the cause of peace. He encouraged the meeting's participants to demonstrate the necessary political will to implement the decisions resulting from their work. "Be assured that the United Nations will continue to furnish you with all possible support," he said.