Congolese parties agree on need for dialogue and reconciliation – Migiro

24 April 2007

The United Nations Deputy Secretary-General said today in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) that all parties there agree on the need for dialogue and reconciliation in order to achieve lasting peace in the country, where recent clashes have forced thousands to flee in the northeast.

“I carry with me a strong feeling of triumph, having seen the efforts of the National Assembly and its president in promoting reconciliation and dialogue in a bid for unity and to strengthen democracy in the DRC,” said Asha Rose Migiro following a series of high-level meetings in the country.

Ms. Migiro, who also met with the Minster of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, said all those she had talked to were “proud that the DRC elections were held in a free and fair manner.”

She said that the recent March violence in Kinshasa, although regrettable, is “something that can still be an incentive for the country to consolidate the peace dividends and to put in place mechanisms and institutions that will ensure that human rights thrive, and that democracy continues.”

This, Ms. Migiro said, “will enable the Congolese people to sit down and to pick up the challenges, and put in place programmes to ensure that they overcome the immense social and economic problems that the country is facing.”

She added that all parties she had spoken to “agree that there cannot be any alternative to dialogue and reconciliation.”

The UN can give a guarantee of its “engaged presence in the DRC, and a readiness to continue to work with the Congolese people and their Government,” she added.

Another guarantee, she said, was that the Congolese themselves have demonstrated that “they want the path of democracy and peace,” by voting peacefully in last years elections.

The UN World Food Programme (WFP) and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) today reported that they are rushing aid to mitigate the suffering of tens of thousands of people forced to flee their homes after an outbreak of fighting in north-eastern DRC. In North Kivu province alone, close to 65,000 people have been displaced in recent weeks due to intensified fighting between militias and government forces.

 

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