Statement by Deputy Permanent Representative Anna Evstigneeva at UNSC briefing on the situation in the Great Lakes Region
We thank SESG Huang Xia for the briefing. We also welcome representatives of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Africa, Rwanda, and Burundi to this meeting.
Key influence on the developments in the Great Lakes Region is produced by the dire situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. As colleagues already stated, unfortunately, hostilities among M23 group and the governmental forces have resumed. This has a considerable impact on the security situation that continues to deteriorate and exacerbates the overall situation in the region.
Numerous illegal armed formations that are active in the eastern part of the country are benefitting from these developments. DRC’s already serious problems aggravate further, and the national military is preoccupied combating the well-equipped M23, which makes it possible for the illegal armed formations to enhance their illicit activities, keep attacking civilians and exploiting natural resources with impunity.
In these conditions, close coordination of actions of governmental troops and MONUSCO contingents is crucial. Yet it is clear that forceful measures alone are not enough to ensure lasting normalization in the DRC. There needs to be dialogue, as well as effective confidence-building measures, consolidation of regional states, their shared interest in stabilizing the situation in the GLR. In the long run, everyone will benefit from peaceful and sustainable development, mutually advantageous cooperation and commitment to finding collective solutions to lasting problems.
In this regard, we call to intensify efforts for full implementation of the fundamental 2013 Peace, Security, and Cooperation Framework for the DRC and the Great Lakes Region. This joint work requires true deliberation, as well as strong commitment to the assumed obligations.
We welcome the important decisions on establishment of the regional forces that were made during the consultations of the Nairobi process. Those decisions need to be implemented with the support of the international community, in close coordination with MONUSCO, and given the leading role of Kinshasa in this process. We also welcome the peacekeeping efforts of President of Angola J. Lourenço and the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR).
We believe that conjugation of various efforts and initiatives could facilitate achievement of quality results of the regional cooperation. Basically, those efforts are meant to complement each other and serve the goal of bringing peace, socio-economic development, and an opportunity to unlock their potential to all Africans who live in the Great Lakes Region.
On our part, we reiterate our readiness to promote stabilization in the Great Lakes Region by encouraging dialogue and constructive cooperation among the GLR states. We are committed to engaging meaningfully with the relevant UN institutions and representatives.
We support the efforts of the United Nations to promote the Strategy for Peace Consolidation, Conflict Prevention and Conflict Resolution, as well as the work of the UN officials aimed at implementing the Plan of Action for the fulfilment of this strategy.
We completely support the activities of SESG Xia aimed at promoting inter-state cooperation and facilitating regional efforts to mitigate tension in the Great lakes Region.