On Wednesday June 1, 2022, The United Nations called for effective military operations against M23 rebels, a congolese militia founded, supported, and reinforced by the Rwandan army. The call to the military response was made in Goma, North Kivu by Ms Bintou Keita, the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General in the DRC. The call follows another call from Cardinal Fridolin Ambongo, the Catholic Church Leader in DRC.
Ms Bintou Keita said that with their partners in the Congolese army (FARDC), the UN peacekeeping mission army, MONUSCO, managed to restore a precarious calm in two territories. She addedd that the MONUSCO efforts "must continue, if we must resolve the M23 problem once and for all." To achieve that goal the efforts, as outlined by Ms BIntou Keita, require three strategies:
- a firm military response to any provocation or attack.
- a political engagement and commitment of all parties in good faith, where all countries of the region must abide by the terms of their own mechanisms, including the Expanded Joint Verification Mechanism
- Finally, an operational response, especially disarmament mechanism, the DDRCS Program, province by province.
The call from the UN Representative follows that of the Catholic Church leader, Cardinal Fridolin Ambongo, the Archbishop of Kinshasa, on Sunday May 29, 2022 in Kikwit, Kwilu, while addressing hundreds of people attending the launch of the provincial Episcopal Assembly of Kinshasa.
According to Cardinal Fridolin Ambongo, based on all analyses, facts, and assessment “ the Congolese people, despite the immensity of their natural resources, including mineral riches, land, waters, forests, and trees, despite all this, are today ranked among the most unhappy peoples on earth.”
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Cardinal Fridolin Ambongo continued his speech by calling on the Congolese people to realize that the country is in danger, hence "to stand up and take responsibility to reverse the trend, instead of spending their time arguing about political positions, money, some times a few dollars."
The statements by the Cardinal are even more important as Pope Francis is expected in the DRC between July 2 - 5, 2022, with a plan to stop in Goma, Eastern DRC.
The statements by the two prominent figures reinforce the positions of the DRC government regarding the invasion of Eastern DRC by M23 with the help of the Rwandan military.
Meanwhile, as predicted, DRC President Felix Tshisekedi has started to drag his feet regarding the approach to the invasion. Many observers had already predicted his behaviors, pointing to his persistent irrational decisions regarding the strategy of the Rwandan government and millitary to the balkanization of DRC.
Most have wondered whether once again will overcome his potential blessing or naivety regarding the Rwandan military strategy (See DR Congo: President Felix Tshisekedi, Facing Serious Crisis in East, Closer to Expelling Rwandan Ambassador Karega)
AfroAmerica Network is still closely following the situation.
@AfroAmerica Network 2022