Monday, December 26, 2005

DR Congo 'Yes' vote in solid lead

So this seems to be the latest article in English about the referendum in DRC, at the time I am writing this post:

DR Congo 'Yes' vote in solid lead

Voters in the DR Congo give an 83%-approval to a new constitution, with nearly two-thirds of ballots counted.
Just keeping an eye on the situation down there. The "Yes" has definitely won, and we are just waiting for confirmation (as stipulated by law) by the Supreme Court. On the political front, there seems to be some movement from the former rebel group (now political party) Congolese Rally for Democracy (RCD), to try to form an alliance with veteran - and most popular - opposition leader Etienne Tshisekedi. This while there has been pressures (at least according to a report I just heard on french RFI) on Tshisekedi, from his own camp, to renounce the boycott tactics, and join the process, however imperfect. Something to look out for...

In the mean time, there has been renewed fighting in the East, especially in Ituri. The joint forces of the UN Mission (MONUC), and the Congolese Army are engaged in an offensive action against Ugandan rebels. One Indian blue helmet died today. This action is a part of a bigger operation against all militias in that area, allowed under the "Chapter VII" powers granted to MONUC by the Security Council.

I must note here that, when given adequate support and backing, the UN can do quite a good job. Look at Namibia, Timor-Leste, Liberia. Or even more recently, look at UNAMSIL (the UN Mission in Sierra Leone), which is actually leaving Sierra Leone, after 6 years of operation, with an outstanding report card, their peacemaking and peacekeeping missions accomplished. I hope the International community does not "sleep on its laurels", and realize that there is still much to do to keep Sierra Leone peaceful, in other ways. But as for UNAMSIL, the key words here, are support and backing...

See if this type of high profile visits (Denver Post) - which I encourage nevertheless - amounted, more often, to more than just political stunts; and if there was more genuine and uninterested will here in the West, to see the betterment of our fellow humans whatever their color or location, maybe half of Africa's - and in this story's case Congo's - problems would have found a solution. But I am too idealistic, am I not? I still wonder...

The Denver Post article I used in the paragraph above is uncharacteristically insightful, for a "US heartland" paper. I urge people to read it, and I sincerely commend them for it.



Black River Eagle said...

Thanks for the link to the Denver Post article about the U.S. Congressional visit to Kenya, Rwanda, and the D.R.C. There were a number of news reports about this trip earlier in the month of December 2005. Senator Brownback (R-Kansas) is no slouch when it comes to affairs in Africa and U.S. government policies toward Africa, but more on that later.

Checkout Senator Brownback's Africa Journal at his official website for a follow-up on the trip. Also, there is a very animated dialogue about the usefullness of the trip at the Wichita (Kansas) Eagle newspaper blog (WEblog). Here is the link to the WEblog post:

BTW. Happy New Year 2006!

TheMalau said...

Thank you very much for the link!!!

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