14th April 2024
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Kiir returns from DR Congo, Angola visits

Author: Chany Ninrew | Published: Wednesday, March 27, 2024

President Kiir greets his advisors Tut Gatluak and Kuol Manyang upon arrival at JIA. March 27, 2024. (Photo: PPU).

President Salva Kiir jetted back to Juba on Wednesday after visiting DR Congo and Angola to engage leaders on ending conflicts and diplomatic tensions in the East African region.

Kiir, the head of the East African Community (EAC), embarked on the Kinshasa and Luanda peace mission on Sunday, in a bid to resolve conflict between DRC and Rwanda as well as the fallout between the later and Burundi.

The president’s office said Kiir toured the Great Lakes Region “to drum up support for peace and security in the region, with focus on the conflict in the Eastern DR Congo.”

Foreign Affairs Dr. James Pitia Morgan reportedly told the media that the tour was to highlight the importance of peace and stability in East Africa and the Great Lakes region.

The statement said Kiir also engaged his Congolese and Angolan counterparts on matters of cooperation between the two countries, as well as ways to restore peace and end conflict in the neighboring Sudan.

In February, Kiir embarked on the consultative meetings with Rwandan and Burundian presidents amidst heightened tensions in the region.

Renewed fighting between the Congolese army and resurgent M23 rebels has sparked tension with Rwanda and displaced thousands in the North Kivu Province.

Kinshasa accuses Kigali of backing the M23 rebels, an allegation backed by the United States and the United Nations investigations. Rwanda has repeatedly rejected the accusations.

Meanwhile, Burundi also closed its borders with Rwanda on January 11, 2024, accusing its neighbor of funding rebel attacks.

This came after Red Tabara, a Burundian rebel group, killed 20 people near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo, in December 2023.

After concluding the three-nation peace tour, President Kiir will then convene an EAC Summit, with the view of mending relations between member states and resolve conflicts in the region.

 

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