The Tanzania Times
Eastern Africa News Network

‘Lay Down Arms! This time we mean business,’ East African Presidents orders immediate ceasefire in DR Congo

Foreign armed forces operating in the Democratic Republic of Congo have been ordered to withdraw from DRC immediately.

The six presidents from the countries forming the East African Community (EAC) have also called for instant ceasefire by all fighting parties.

In their extra-ordinary summit of the EAC Heads of State held in Burundi, the East African leaders directed the chiefs of defence forces from the region to meet within one week and set new timelines for the withdrawal.

They insisted that the process be accompanied by dialogue.

In their joint communique, the Summit called upon all parties to respect the decision made.

The meeting of six presidents and a representative from South Sudan directed that all violations be reported to the chairperson of the summit for immediate consultation with members of the summit.

The summit directed all troop contributing countries to immediately deploy and urged the democratic republic of Congo to immediately facilitate the deployment of troops from the republic of South Sudan and the republic of Uganda to the East African regional force.

The Summit in Burundi (see previous story)

The heads of state reiterated their decisions at the high-level consultative meeting of the summit on the peace process in the Eastern DRC held in Harm el Sheikh in Egypt.

They commended the facilitator of the EAC-led Nairobi process for his leadership and efforts on re-energising the peace process.

The Summit also commended the African Union Peace and Security Council, the UN Security Council and the international Community for political and financial support towards implementation of the EAC-led process and the Luanda process.

The republic of Angola and Senegal were applauded for their financial contribution which largely facilitated the political process which is on-going.

The summit noted with appreciation the financial contributions by Kenya and Tanzania and expressed gratitude to both Rwanda and Uganda for their commitment to contribute to the EAC peace facility fund.

The Twentieth Extra-Ordinary Summit of EAC Heads of State, held in Bujumbura, was convened by the President of the Republic of Burundi, Èvariste Ndayashimiye.

President Ndayashimiye is the chairperson of the Summit of East African Community Heads of State.

The leaders attending the EAC Summit meeting include President Samia Suluhu Hassan of Tanzania, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, of Uganda and President William Samoei Ruto from Kenya.

Others were President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, and President Félix Antoine Tshisekedi of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The President of the Republic of South Sudan, Salva Kiir, was however absent, being represented by the country’s Minister of East Africa Affairs Deng Kuol.

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