Angola to Deploy Troops to DRC to Ensure Peace After Allegedly Failed Ceasefire

Congolese army deputy chief of staff General Chiko Tshitambwe (L) greets Kenyan army troops as they land at Goma airport, eastern Democratic Republic of Congo on November 12, 2022, as part of a regional military operation targeting rebels in the region. InternationalIndiaAfricaThe M23 rebel group, which mainly operates in eastern DRC, has been conducting a major campaign against government troops in recent months. On March 7, the rebels announced a ceasefire to start talks with the government. However, new clashes between the rebels and the army were reported the next day. Angola has announced that it will deploy a contingent of troops to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) following consultations with the country’s authorities to support the army and regional forces in operations aimed at ensuring peace in the region.

"After consultations with the authorities of the DRC, the Republic of Angola decided to send a unit from the support contingent for peacekeeping operations of the Angolan Armed Forces," a statement from the Angolan president's office read.

It was noted that the main objective of the troops that will be deployed is to help secure the areas occupied by members of M23 and protect ceasefire monitors. The statement also indicated that the move follows decisions made at mini-summits held under the peace and security process in eastern DRC. According to the statement, Angola is acting in accordance with its responsibilities as a mediator within the framework of the Luanda Process. The country is hosting talks in its capital, Luanda, between the DRC and Rwanda, which stands accused by the Congolese government of supporting the M23 rebellion – an accusation Rwanda denies.The Congolese government has reportedly responded to Angola’s decision to send troops, saying that it would welcome the deployment of soldiers to help in the fight against the rebels.Last week, the rebels announced a ceasefire to resolve the conflict with the DRC government. The group stated that it had stopped fighting in accordance with the recommendations and agreements accepted at a meeting held last November with President of Angola Joao Lourenco and other regional meetings.But the fighting reportedly resumed hours after the rebels’ press release on the ceasefire. Both sides of the conflict accused each other of breaking the truce. Earlier, President Felix Tshisekedi expressed doubts about the sincerity of the rebels’ move, saying that “several ceasefire commitments have been announced without being respected.”AfricaEAC Force Will Not Fire First Shot in Eastern DR Congo, Secretary-General Says22 January, 08:27 GMTThe East African Community (EAC) is leading a peace initiative to ensure a ceasefire and peace in eastern DRC. Amid increasing tensions in the country and M23 advances across North Kivu province in the east, in June 2022, the EAC established a regional force to help stabilize the situation, deploying troops from member states, including Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, and South Sudan. The Luanda summit, which was held in November last year within the framework of the peace process, concluded with the decision to cease hostilities starting on November 25 by setting up a disarmament of M23 in the country under the control of the DRC army and a multinational regional force. However, in January this year, M23 missed the agreed deadline to fully withdraw from the previously occupied areas.


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