Sunday 25 February 2018
(New Vision 09/09/13)
Kinshasa — Democratic Republic of Congo said it would return to negotiations with eastern rebels next week after regional leaders set a two-week deadline for peace talks to end an 18-month-old rebellion. A summit of five African presidents from the Great Lakes region called on Thursday for Congo to restart the stalled talks with the M23 insurgents within three days, after military successes left the government in a stronger position. With the help of a new U.N. Intervention Brigade, which has a tough mandate to neutralise armed groups, Congo's army has pushed M23 fighters away from Goma, a city of 1 million people on the shores of Lake Kivu. Congolese President Joseph Kabila opened Ugandan-hosted talks with the M23 after...
(The Observer 09/09/13)
Artisanal gold miners form human chains to excavate near Iga-Barrière, about 25km east of Bunia. The rebel M23 group have agreed to resume talks with Kinshasa in Munyonyo, in three days, time, after a respite in fighting in eastern DR Congo. Regional leaders, meeting in Munyonyo, Kampala, last week, had given the rebels a 14-day ultimatum to conclude the talks. The rebels, who had protested the resumption of fighting back home, are now understood to have indicated a willingness to talk, according news agency reports at the weekend. M23 leader Bertrand Bisimwa was reportedly angry that the UN and Kinshasa ignored the talks and resumed the fighting, attacking his bases. The latest ultimatum followed an extra-ordinary meeting of the chiefs...
(AFP (eng) 09/09/13)
KAMPALA, September 9, 2013 (AFP) - Democratic Republic of Congo's M23 rebels said Monday they were waiting for a government delegation to arrive to resume peace talks, in line with an ultimatum set by regional leaders. Leaders of Africa's Great Lakes region on Thursday set a three-day deadline for the resumption of talks between the M23 army mutineers and Kinshasa aimed to broker an end to a recent upsurge in fighting in the resource-rich east of DR Congo. The talks, to be held once again in the Ugandan capital Kampala, should be concluded within 14 days. "All our delegation members are here," M23 delegation chief Rene Abandi told AFP Monday. "We are waiting for the arrival of the government side...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/09/13)
BUNAGANA, Democratic Republic of Congo | (Reuters) - Democratic Republic of Congo's M23 insurgents said on Sunday they are ready to return to peace talks and would not make integration into the national army, which has not proved successful in the past, part of the deal. Regional presidents on Thursday called Kinshasa and the rebels to restart negotiations after the army, backed by U.N. troops, bolstered the government's position with rare military successes in recent fighting. The M23 insurgency is the latest incarnation of a Tutsi-dominated rebellion that has repeatedly tried to integrate into the Congolese army, only to withdraw. Its fighters deserted en masse 18 months ago, accusing the government of reneging on a 2009 peace deal. M23's leader...
(Voice of America 09/09/13)
KIGALI — United States special envoy to the Great Lakes region of Africa, former senator Russ Feingold, and United Nations counterpart Mary Robinson are in Rwanda on the last leg of a four-day trip to promote peace in the region. Sounding upbeat about peace prospects and warning all sides against further military action, their joint visit came as Great Lakes regional leaders agreed this week that peace talks between the Democratic Republic of Congo’s government and M23 rebels should resume in Kampala within days. DRC President Joseph Kabila, whose army, with help from the United Nations, successfully pushed M23 fights roughly 18 miles (30 kilometers) from the eastern city of Goma last week, is now in a stronger military position...
(The Namibian 09/09/13)
The Southern African Development Community (SADC) is likely to receive normal to above normal rainfall for the period October to December 2013, the Southern Africa Regional Climate Outlook Forum said in its latest outlook. The forum, however, added that south westernmost Angola, coastal areas of Namibia, west coastal South Africa and northernmost Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are more likely to receive normal to below normal rainfall. In the November to December 2013 as well as January 2014 period, bulk of the SADC region is likely to receive normal to above normal rainfall while the greater part of DRC, northernmost and south western Angola as well as western fringes of Namibia and South Africa are likely to receive normal to...
(Awoko 09/09/13)
The first ever West Africa Business Expo 2013, opened in Accra on Thursday, with a call on Ghanaians to develop interest in setting up their own businesses. The two-day event was designed to create platforms for business owners to access information and interact with service providers and encourage learning. The expo on the theme: “Kick starting and sustaining business growth, “was also aimed at educating the public on how entrepreneurial activities have been the backbone of many economies, and the focus of many countries to drive economic growth in a sustainable way. It would enlighten the participants on a number of implementations and successful interventions including finance, capacity and skill building, which have been adopted to drive growth in developed...
(Voice of America 09/09/13)
The Italian coast guard has rescued more than 700 people in the last two days from boats carrying migrants and refugees. Italian officials say four vessels got into difficulty in waters near Sicily. People from Syria, Egypt, Eritrea, Nigeria and Ghana were rescued. The Italian news agency ANSA reported Saturday that more than 207 people were taken to the island of Lampedusa after their rescue by the coast guard and navy. Among them were two women in the late stages of pregnancy. Another boat with 212 people aboard was being towed to Lampedusa. Two other broken-down boats carrying 293 people were taken to Augusta on Sicily's eastern coast. Violence in Syria and Egypt this year has spurred an increased number...
(AL Jazeera 09/07/13)
As Kenya votes to withdraw from this 'court of last resort', we ask if other African nations will follow suit. Kenya's parliament has voted to withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC), sending another strong message from the continent against what is perceived to be interference from the West. The motion was passed after an emergency session of parliament was convened - and the timing could not have been more telling. William Ruto, Kenya's deputy president, is due to appear before the ICC on September 10, on charges of crimes against humanity, while Uhuru Kenyatta, the Kenyan president, is scheduled to face similar charges in November. They stem from violence that broke out after disputed elections at the end of...
(New Vision 09/06/13)
Five regional Heads of State of Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda are meeting in Kampala today (Thursday) in an emergency meeting to find solutions to the fighting in eastern DR Congo. The foreign affairs ministry spokesperson, Elly Kamahungye, confirmed the arrival of Presidents Joseph Kabila (DR Congo), Salva Kiir (South Sudan), Paul Kagame (Rwanda) and Jakaya Kikwete (Tanzania). The emergency meeting comes a month after the Heads of State met in Nairobi to discuss the situation in eastern DRC following renewed fighting that has resulted in the death of UN soldiers serving under the intervention brigade. In his opening remarks during a closed meeting for ministers, Foreign Affairs minister Sam Kutesa said that the renewed...
(Voice of America 09/06/13)
KAMPALA — Leaders in Africa's Great Lakes region want the government and rebels in the Democratic Republic of Congo to resume peace talks following a flare-up of fighting. After a day of closed-door discussions in Kampala, five heads of state from Africa's Great Lakes region declared that negotiations should resume within three days between the Congolese government and the rebel group M23. Participants included the presidents of Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The Kampala talks were held under the auspices of the International Conference of the Great Lakes Region, which Uganda chairs, and were meant to address the fresh fighting in the eastern DRC. Late last month, the Congolese army and a U.N. intervention...
(AL Jazeera 09/06/13)
Resumption of talks comes weeks after government troops backed by UN forces launched fresh attacks against rebels. Rebels from the Democratic Republic of Congo's M23 movement have said they will resume peace talks with the government, agreeing to a demand from leaders of Africa's Great Lakes region. Talks between the two sides were suspended in May, and the agreement to reopen them follows a recent upsurge in violence in the country, where Congolese troops backed by a special United Nations force launched a fresh assault against the rebels late last month. "Our delegates are already in Kampala. They are ready to negotiate with Kinshasa immediately as soon as the request has been passed on by the mediator," M23 leader Bertrand...
(Voice of America 09/06/13)
The Democratic Republic of Congo is ready to re-start peace talks with the M23 rebels in Uganda’s capital, Kampala, according to Information Minister Lambert Mende. Mende says President Joseph Kabila’s administration intends to find a political solution to the conflict in the restive North Kivu province following renewed clashes between the national army [FARDC] and the M23 rebels. “Our delegation has never totally left Uganda. So anytime we are ready, even [Friday] we are ready, for the talks,” said Mende. “What we need as a government is [for] the M23 to disarm themselves and dissolve as an armed group. We cannot discuss with them while they are still armed and killing our people.” Mende’s comments came after heads of state...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/06/13)
KAMPALA | (Reuters) - African leaders trying to end an 18-month-old uprising in Congo called on Thursday for stalled talks between the government and eastern rebels to restart within three days. Democratic Republic of Congo's government and M23 rebels began Ugandan-hosted talks after the rebels briefly seized the city of Goma late last year. However, negotiations have stalled and heavy fighting has resumed in recent weeks. Congo's army, backed by a new U.N. intervention brigade, with a tough mandate to crush armed groups, has beaten back rebels from positions in the hills overlooking Goma but it has not extended gains deep into M23 territory. The next round of discussions should last for a maximum of 14 days "during which maximum...
(Business Day 09/06/13)
Multinational companies operating in Africa are hitting back at claims that government coffers are being eroded by deliberate intragroup mispricing and shifting of profits across borders to pay significantly less tax. Apart from a lack of clarity on what guidelines to use, reports of bribes to resolve tax disputes, poorly educated tax officials focusing only on their bonuses, and a lack of will to follow global guidelines are emerging. Governments are concerned that money they should be receiving is being diverted to other countries, which then receive the tax revenue. This is leading to major moves by tax authorities to ensure transactions between related companies or parties, such as employers and employees, are done at arm’s length. This means these...
(The Guardian 09/06/13)
Scheme could herald a 'green gold' revolution as mines commit to ban child labour, enforce safety rules and prevent toxic run off. In a bustling area of Nyarugusu, in the heart of Tanzania's gold lands, a stocky man is fanning a dustbin lid of smouldering charcoal, gold ore and mercury on the pavement. Each waft sends a cloud of toxic vapour into the faces of children and adults as they gather to watch. The burning of mercury is a common sight in the streets, homes and cottage-industry mines throughout east Africa. The liquid metal is used to extract the gold and then vaporised to leave behind flakes of the precious metal. But in this dangerous industry, seeds of a gold...
(Reuters (Eng) 09/05/13)
KIGALI | Thu Sep 5, 2013 (Reuters) - The deployment of a U.N. force of African troops in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo threatens to draw Rwanda into a damaging conflict with African powers and derail its economic "miracle" if donors again cut aid over Kigali's involvement there. President Paul Kagame has twice marched his troops over the border since Rwanda's 1994 genocide. One of the justifications he cited was his country's national security, the need to counter a threat Kigali said was posed by those behind the genocide who had found haven in eastern Congo. Rwanda, though, has usually managed to fend off criticism from Western allies who accuse Kigali of backing the M23 rebel group they say has...
(AFP (eng) 09/05/13)
KAMPALA, September 5, 2013 (AFP) - Presidents from Africa's Great Lakes region gathered Thursday in Uganda for a fresh bid to broker a deal to end fighting in resource-rich eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Meetings first took place between DR Congo leader Joseph Kabila and his rival Rwandan counterpart Paul Kagame -- who rejects accusations of backing rebel forces in Congo -- Ugandan foreign ministry spokesman Elly Kamahungye told AFP. The meeting of the 11-member International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) -- the seventh such summit held to try to find a lasting solution -- comes amid a recent upsurge in violence. Congolese troops, backed by a special United Nations force, launched a fresh assault against the M23...
(New Vision 09/05/13)
Kampala — Foreign and defence ministers from the region are today meeting in Kampala ahead of the emergency meeting by regional heads of state to discuss the situation in Eastern DR Congo. The heads of state are set to meet at the Commonwealth Resort Munyonyo on Friday September 6, under the auspices of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR). This follows the launch of an offensive by the UN intervention brigade against positions of the M23 rebels. Elly Kamahungye, the spokesperson of the Ugandan foreign affairs ministry said in a statement on Tuesday that Uganda, as chair of the ICGLR, felt it urgent to convene an extraordinary Summit for the member states. "This coming extraordinary summit should...
(Voice of America 09/05/13)
GOMA, DRC — African leaders from the Great Lakes region will meet Thursday to find a solution to fighting in the Democratic Republic of Congo between the armed forces and M23 militants. Residents of the eastern town of Goma are hoping for a quick and firm end to the conflict. A love song in a time of war is heard inside a guitar shop in Goma, where students practice their chord progressions. Meanwhile outside, the military battles a tenacious group of rebel soldiers. Shop owner Emmanuel Birubi said Congolese people have a natural gift for guitar. Sadly, though, in the midst of conflict, he said nobody has the money to spend on music. “When there is war, people don’t have...

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