09/11/2001
Press Release
SC/7204



Security Council

4410th & 4412th Meetings* (AM & Night)


SECURITY COUNCIL SUPPORTS THIRD DEPLOYMENT PHASE


FOR UN MISSION IN DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO


Resolution 1376 (2001) Adopted Unanimously;

Describes Variety of Requirements for Phase III Implementation


The Security Council this evening expressed its support for the launching of phase III of the deployment of the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC) and stressed the importance it attached to the deployment of MONUC in the east of the country.


As it unanimously adopted resolution 1376 (2001) at the close of the second of two meetings, the Council, while it welcomed the general respect for the ceasefire, expressed concern at the hostilities in areas in the eastern part of the country and called on the parties to cease any form of support to the armed groups.  The Council also affirmed that the implementation of phase III would require the demilitarization of Kisangani, the full restoration of freedom of movement for persons and goods between Kinshasa and Kisangani, and throughout the country, and the full cooperation with MONUC military and logistical operations as well as humanitarian, human rights and child-protection activities.


The Council further affirmed that the implementation of phase III required the transmission to MONUC, as soon as possible, the information needed to plan its support for the total withdrawal of foreign troops in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, including the number of foreign military personnel, their equipment and armament, their exit routes and a precise table of implementation.


Implementation of phase III would also require:  the transmission to MONUC of information needed to plan MONUC's role in the process of disarmament, demobilization, repatriation, resettlement and reintegration (DDRRR) programme for armed groups; the establishment of a direct dialogue between the governments of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda leading to confidence-building and a joint mechanism for coordination and exchanges of information regarding the DDRRR process; and the establishment by governments of the countries concerned, in particular Rwanda, of conditions conducive to voluntary DDRRR of the members of the armed groups concerned.


The Council noted with concern the joint communiqué issued by the Mouvement de Liberation du Congo and the Rassemblement Congolais pour la Democratie concerning the deployment of a joint special force in Kindu.  The Council stressed


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*     The 4411th meeting was closed.


that appropriate conditions would be necessary to allow MONUC to fulfil its role there and to ensure that discussion on the voluntary disarmament and demobilization of concerned armed groups took place in a neutral environment.


The Council also welcomed the commitment made by the RCD during a private meeting of the Security Council on 9 November to demilitarize Kisangani expeditiously.  It also welcomed the Secretary-General’s decision to further deploy MONUC’s personnel in that city to contribute to the training of police and stressed that once demilitarized, no party would be permitted to reoccupy the city militarily.


Also by the resolution, the Council expressed its concern over the repeated human rights violations throughout the Democratic Republic, the humanitarian situation in the country and the economic situation.  It stressed that economic recovery and development were interdependent and, in that regard, underlined the urgent need for increased international economic assistance in support of the peace process.


At the Council's first meeting today, Secretary-General Kofi Anan said that for phase III to succeed, the fighting in the east of the country must stop.  The Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda must reach an understanding on the process of disarmament, demobilization, and the repatriation of combatants and the creation of a mechanism of coordination to facilitate the transition to reintegration.  He said Kisangani must be demilitarized and he intended to strengthen the military presence of MONUC in that city to facilitate the demilitarization.


The Minister for Foreign Affairs of Angola, Joao Bernardo De Miranda, who is the current Chairman of the Political Committee of the Lusaka Agreement, said the question now was how to maintain the ceasefire, achieve disarmament and demobilization, accelerate the withdrawal of foreign forces, maintain the internal dialogue and contribute substantially to returning peace to the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  The successful implementation of those provisions of the Lusaka Agreement could make the difference between pursuing the path to lasting peace and continuing the war, not only in the Democratic Republic, but also in the entire Great Lakes region.


Council President Percival James Patterson, Prime Minister of Jamaica, said the meeting held yesterday with the representatives of the countries of the Regional Peace Initiative on Burundi highlighted the common inter-linkages between the conflicts in that country and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  For that reason, a solution to the conflict in the latter must be pursued regionally, and in a holistic and comprehensive manner.  Today's meeting was taking note of the Secretary-General’s suggestion that the time had come for the parties to explore ways of associating Burundi more closely with the peace process in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.


At the second meeting, Belgium’s representative, speaking on behalf of the European Union and associated States, said that as MONUC prepared to enter the third phase of its deployment, it was important for the parties to the conflict to show their commitment to the peace process.  Otherwise, all efforts would be


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futile.  That goodwill must take tangible form in the immediate future at three levels: the question of disarmament, demobilization and reintegration; the withdrawal of foreign forces; and the inter-Congolese dialogue.


The first meeting, which began at 11:20 a.m., was adjourned at 12 p.m.  The second meeting, during which the resolution was adopted, began at 7:38 p.m. and was adjourned at 7:45 p.m.


Background


The Security Council met this morning to discuss the situation concerning the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). 


At its last meeting on 24 October, acting on the recommendation of the Secretary-General, the Council authorized the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC) to enter phase III of its deployment.  The Council expressed concern at the declining humanitarian and human rights situation and reiterated its call for all parties to urgently address the human rights abuses in the government-controlled territory, the territory controlled by the Front de Liberation du Congo (FLC) and the territory controlled by the Rassemblement Congolais pour la Démocratie (RCD).


According to the Secretary-General, the main tasks to be accomplished during a third phase of MONUC deployment include the total withdrawal of all foreign forces and the disarmament and demobilization of the armed groups, the report says.  Durable solutions must be found to the problem of armed groups, including the repatriation, resettlement and reintegration of ex-combatants into society. The objective of the disarmament, demobilization, repatriation, resettlement and reintegration programme is to encourage the combatants and their families to take a step towards a better life without weapons.  The MONUC must have the cooperation of all parties or it will not be able to assess the scope of the problem, and define the extent of its assistance to the settlement process.


Following a meeting on 6 November of Rwandan President Paul Kagame and Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni in London, MONUC issued a statement saying that the "mini-summit" came at a crucial moment of rising tensions between the neighbouring countries -- both of which are implicated in the conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo -- and coincided with a resurgence of violence in the eastern part of the country.  The Special Representative of the Secretary-General in the DRC, Namanga Ngongi, saluted the London meeting, which had the support and encouragement of the Security Council and the Secretary-General, the statement said.  Mr. Ngongi invited all the signatories to the Lusaka peace accords to increase high-level contacts that favour the path to peace, rather than to a military solution.  Due to the frank discussions that such meetings engender, such talks also help to eliminate numerous obstacles in the path to peace by "maintaining and reinforcing the current momentum in favour of dialogue and harmony", the MONUC statement said.


The Lusaka Agreement, signed on 10 July 1999 by Zambia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, along with Angola, Namibia, Rwanda, Uganda and Zimbabwe, called for a cessation of hostilities between all belligerent forces in the DRC.  The Mouvement de Liberation du Congo (MLC), one of two Congolese rebel movements, signed the Agreement on 1 August.  The Agreement included provisions on the normalization of the situation along the DRC border; the control of illicit trafficking of arms and the infiltration of armed groups; the holding of a national dialogue; the need to address security concerns; and the establishment of a mechanism for disarming militias and armed groups.  It also provided for a Joint Military Commission (JMC) composed of two representatives from each party under a neutral chairman appointed by the Organization of African Unity (OAU) and proposed an "appropriate force" to be constituted, facilitated and deployed by the United Nations in collaboration with the OAU.


Statements


KOFI ANAN, Secretary-General of the United Nations, said that if MONUC was to succeed in phase III of its deployment, the fighting in the east of the country must stop.  No one should support the armed groups that continued to fight in the east and no one should take any further aggressive action against them.  At the same time, everything possible must be done to create conditions that would encourage former combatants to return voluntarily to their homes and enable them to be safely settled.


The Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda must reach an understanding on the process of disarmament, demobilization, and the repatriation of combatants and the creation of a mechanism of coordination to facilitate the transition to reintegration.  Kisangani must be demilitarized in accordance with resolution 1304 (2000).  He intended to strengthen the military presence of MONUC in Kisangani to facilitate the demilitarization of that city.  The objective of MONUC's deployment in Kindu was to create a climate of security.  Noting with concern the decision of the RCD and the MLC to establish a special joint force based in Kindu, he said Kindu must, in no case, be used for the launching of military operations.


He was encouraged by the withdrawal of the Namibian troops, and also many of the Ugandan troops, and strongly urged the Angolan, Zimbabwean and Rwandan Governments to speed up preparations for a rapid withdrawal of their troops.  The reopening of the Congo River and its tributaries was the most important single step to unite the country and stimulate its economic and social life.  He called on all parties to help MONUC do its part in achieving that objective, notably dismantling checkpoints and removing the other remaining barriers to free movement.


He urged members of the Political Committee, especially the Congolese parties, to support the neutral facilitator of the internal Congolese dialogue.  He welcomed the willingness of the Government of South Africa to host the dialogue when it resumed.  In the meantime, he hoped the Congolese parties would continue to meet informally for constructive discussions on the country's future.  He also urged the three Congolese parties to continue efforts to improve human rights within the areas they controlled.  They must also facilitate access for those seeking to bring humanitarian relief to the suffering population in the areas they controlled.


Finally, he said, not enough was being done to address the plight of children, particularly those who had been inducted into the various armed forces.  He urged all members of the Political Committee, especially the Congolese parties, to work with the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and his Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict, as well as with MONUC’s child protection officers, to draw up and implement agreements on demobilizing child soldiers as soon as possible.


JOAO BERNARDO DE MIRANDA, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Angola and current Chairman of the Political Committee of the Lusaka Agreement, said today's meeting was all the more important because it was taking place at a decisive phase of the Lusaka Agreement -- the beginning of phase III of MONUC.  The question now was how to maintain the ceasefire, achieve disarmament and demobilization, accelerate the withdrawal of foreign forces, maintain the internal dialogue, and contribute substantially to returning peace to the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  The successful implementation of those provisions of the Agreement could make the difference between pursuing the path to lasting peace and continuing war, not only in the DRC, but also in the entire Great Lakes region.


He said the most important of the advances that had been achieved had been the ceasefire.  That demonstrated the will of the parties to end the war and resolve their problems in a peaceful fashion.  It showed there was no military solution to the situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  Regarding the situation in the east of the DRC, involving some of the signatories to the Agreement and some who were not parties to the ceasefire, he said that if it persisted, it might endanger the ceasefire and lead to an increase in hostilities.  The solution should not be limited to the suspension of military aid to armed groups.  It must also provide guarantees for disarmament, demobilization, repatriation, resettlement and reintegration of all troops living in the DRC.  He emphasized that combatants must see an alternative to the war, if they were to be expected to abandon their weapons and return to their land. 


The completion of the withdrawal of Namibian forces and the partial withdrawal of other troops had established the basis for phase III of MONUC, he said.  He welcomed the Secretary-General's recommendation to authorize the start of phase III and he appealed to Council members to support that recommendation, to allow the broadening of MONUC operations throughout the territory.  The Political Committee understood that in the future stages of the ceasefire agreement, full withdrawal of foreign forces would require further involvement of the United Nations to accelerate the return of peace to the country.  It was now necessary to consider Council authorization for a peacekeeping force.


He said the return to peace in the Democratic Republic of the Congo would allow the transition in the Central African region to a zone of peace and security.  To reach that dream, the international community and the Security Council, in particular, had an important role to play.


The President of the Council, PERCIVAL JAMES PATTERSON, Prime Minister of Jamaica, said the objective of his country's presidency of the Council was to “advance peace in all areas of the world and to give special attention to the conflicts besetting the African continent”.  Today's meeting intended to consolidate gains made so far and provide further impetus for making lasting peace a reality in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Great Lakes region.  It was part of an ongoing dialogue between the Council and regional leaders to explore ways in which sustained momentum for the peace process in the Democratic Republic of the Congo could be maintained.


Yesterday, the Council met with the representatives of the countries of the Regional Peace Initiative on Burundi.  It was undeniable that there were inter-linkages between the conflicts in Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  For that reason, a solution to the conflict in the latter must be pursued at a regional level, and in a holistic and comprehensive manner.  The meeting today was taking note of the Secretary-General’s suggestion that the time had come for the parties to explore ways of associating Burundi more closely with the peace process in the DRC.


He stressed that there must be a credible plan for the disarmament, demobilization, reintegration and resettlement of ex-combatants, especially of the so-called “negative forces”, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  “In particular, we call on all States to cease support for armed groups operating in the eastern part of that country, and for the cessation of all hostilities throughout”, he said.  Also, as MONUC deployed further eastwards, it was critical that the armed groups comply with and fully implement the relevant Council resolutions, as well as the Lusaka Agreement.


He underscored the need for a comprehensive plan for the full withdrawal of all foreign forces from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  It was imperative that all parties provide MONUC with the necessary information, as per their obligations under relevant agreements and Council resolutions.  In addition, the failure to demilitarize Kisangani continued to be an obstacle to the peace process.  “We reiterate our call on all parties to ensure that this issue is settled without delay”, he said.


He said that while there had been progress in the preparatory stages of the inter-Congolese dialogue, the parties must renew their commitments to the political process.  The international community must fully support that dialogue, as well.  The commitment of all parties to a political process with the widest possible participation was a first step towards a democratic and inclusive system of government –- a prerequisite for lasting peace.  In closing, he stressed that the commitments made to address the illegal exploitation of the natural resources of the Democratic Republic of the Congo must also be earnestly pursued.  "We must seek ways to ensure that revenue from these resources are channelled into the economic and social development of the country for the benefit of all its people", he said.


The Council then convened a closed meeting.


When the Council reconvened in a separate meeting, JEAN DE RUYT (Belgium) spoke on behalf of the European Union and the associated States of Bulgaria, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Czech Republic, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Cyprus, Malta and Turkey.


He said that as the United Nations prepared to enter the third phase of MONUC deployment, it was important that the parties to the conflict show their commitment to the peace process.  Otherwise, all efforts would become futile.  That goodwill must take tangible form in the immediate future at three levels:  the question of disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR); the withdrawal of foreign forces; and the inter-Congolese dialogue.


The Union urged all parties to the conflict, and in particular the Congolese Government, to discontinue all forms of support to armed groups.  He deplored the fact that the United Nations was still not in possession of the information that should be supplied by the parties on the number, composition and location of armed forces on the ground.  He urged parties to supply that information, as they had promised several months ago.


He said that DDR could not take place on a piecemeal or haphazard basis.  MONUC must be given total freedom in its assistance to that process.  There also had to be a minimal understanding between the parties, in particular between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  It was important to continue direct bilateral dialogue.  He reminded parties that DDR must take place on a voluntary and peaceful basis.  Any initiative that ran counter to those principles was unacceptable.  The parties to the conflict must collaborate with the Organization and refrain from actions that might prejudice efforts.  It was also essential for the United Nations to introduce the appropriate mechanisms for DDR to be conducted in a coordinated and integrated manner.


He called on Rwanda to use all its influence with the RCD-Goma to have Kisangani demilitarized.  Progressive deployment, however, must be accompanied by a gradual and reciprocal withdrawal of troops.  He encouraged Uganda to complete the process of withdrawal that it had started and urged the Rwandan and other governments concerned to expedite preparations for withdrawing their troops.


Addressing the inter-Congolese dialogue, he said he did not wish to speak about the Addis Ababa meeting, which the Union deplored.  Rather he wanted to urge the parties to the dialogue, and the facilitator, Sir Ketumile Masire, to agree to hold further meetings to revive the process as soon as possible.  Those meetings should engage in substantive dialogue on the parameters of an inclusive and democratic transition, together with a realistic timetable.


The Union supported the Secretary-General’s recommendation to the Council that the third phase of MONUC deployment be started in order to sustain the momentum of the peace process, and in the hope that the parties to the conflict would assume the moral and political responsibilities that were incumbent on them.  He urged the signatory States, and other parties to the Lusaka Agreement, to show the required political will for the continuation of the peace process.  The Union would give the process its support and also undertake to deploy all its energy and influence to that end, in close cooperation with the United Nations, the Organization of African Unity and all the parties concerned.  The Union would visit the Great Lakes region at the end of this month and, thus, reaffirm its strong commitment to the peace process and its solidarity with the suffering of the people.


Draft Resolution


The Council then unanimously adopted resolution 1376 (2001), the full text of which reads as follows:


The Security Council,


Recalling its previous resolutions and statements by its President,


Reaffirming the obligation of all States to refrain from the use of force against the territorial integrity and political independence of any State, or in any other manner inconsistent with the purposes of the United Nations, and reaffirming also the political independence, the territorial integrity and the sovereignty of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, including over its natural resources,


Taking note of the Secretary-General’s report of 16 October 2001 (S/2001/970) and its recommendations,


Welcoming the participation of the Political Committee for the implementation of the Lusaka Ceasefire Agreement (S/1999/818) in joint meetings held on 9 November 2001,


Determining that the situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo continues to pose a threat to international peace and security in the region,


“1.  Welcomes the general respect for the ceasefire among the parties to the Lusaka Ceasefire Agreement, expresses nonetheless its concern at the hostilities in areas of the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo and calls on the parties to cease any form of support to the armed groups, particularly in the east of the country;


“2.  Welcomes the withdrawal of some foreign forces from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, including the full Namibian contingent, as a positive step towards the full withdrawal of all foreign forces, and requests all States that have not yet done so to begin to implement, without delay, their full withdrawal in accordance with resolution 1304 (2000) of 16 June 2000;


“3.  Demands once again that Kisangani be demilitarized rapidly and unconditionally in accordance with Security Council resolution 1304 (2000), takes note of the pledge by the RCD-Goma during the 4411th meeting of 9 November 2001 fully to demilitarize the city, welcomes the decision of the Secretary-General to further deploy MONUC personnel in this city, notably to contribute to the training of police, stresses that, once demilitarized, no party will be permitted to reoccupy the city militarily and welcomes in this regard the pledge by the Government of the DRC, during the same meeting, to respect this provision;


“4.  Expresses its support for the inter-Congolese dialogue, one of the key elements of the peace process, and for all efforts to promote this process, calls on the Congolese parties to work together for the success of the dialogue, and expresses its support for the Facilitator and his call on the parties to make the dialogue fully inclusive;


“5.  Expresses its grave concern at the repeated human rights violations throughout the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in particular in the territories under the control of the rebel groups party to the Lusaka Ceasefire Agreement, and calls on all parties to put an end to such violations;


“6.  Expresses its serious concern with regard to the humanitarian situation in the DRC and calls on the international community to increase, without delay, its support for humanitarian activities;


“7.  Expresses its serious concern with regard to the economic difficulties facing the Democratic Republic of the Congo, stresses that progress in the peace process and the economic recovery and development of the country are interdependent, and in this regard underlines the urgent need for increased international economic assistance in support of the peace process;


“8.  Reiterates its condemnation of all illegal exploitation of the natural resources of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, demands that such exploitation cease and stresses that the natural resources of the Democratic Republic of the Congo should not be exploited to finance the conflict in that country;


“9.  Emphasizes that there are links between the peace processes in Burundi and in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and, welcoming the recent progress in the Burundi process, invites the parties to the Lusaka Ceasefire Agreement to work with the Burundian authorities to advance these two processes;


“10.Supports the launching of phase III of the deployment of the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC) on the basis of the concept of operations detailed in paragraphs 59 to 87 of the Secretary-General’s report (S/2001/970) and stresses, in this regard, the importance it attaches to the deployment of MONUC in the east of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in conformity with the new concept of operation and within the overall ceiling, including in the cities of Kindu and Kisangani;


“11.Notes with concern the joint communiqué issued on 4 November 2001 by the Secretaries-General of the Mouvement de Libération du Congo and of the Rassemblement Congolais pour la Démocratie concerning the deployment of a joint special force in Kindu, andstresses that appropriate conditions will be necessary to allow MONUC to fulfil its role in Kindu and to ensure that discussions on the voluntary disarmament and demobilization of concerned armed groups take place in a neutral environment;


“12.Affirms that the implementation of phase III of the deployment of MONUC requires the following steps from the parties and requests the Secretary-General to report on progress thereon:


(i)  The transmission to MONUC, as soon as possible and in accordance with its resolution 1355 (2001) of 15 June 2001, of the necessary operational information for the planning of MONUC support for the process of total withdrawal of foreign troops present in the territory of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, including the number of foreign military personnel in the territory of the DRC, their equipment and armament, their exit routes, and a precise timetable for implementation;


(ii)The transmission to MONUC, as soon as possible and in accordance with its resolution 1355 (2001), of the necessary operational information for the planning of MONUC’s mandated role in the process of disarmament, demobilization, repatriation, resettlement and reintegration (DDRRR) programme for the armed groups referred to in annex A, chapter 9.1 of the Lusaka Ceasefire Agreement, including the number of persons concerned, their equipment and armament, their location, their intentions, as well as a precise timetable for implementation;


(iii)    The establishment of a direct dialogue between the governments of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda leading to confidence-building and a joint mechanism for coordination, and exchanges of information regarding the DDRRR process;


(iv)The establishment by the governments of the countries concerned, in particular Rwanda, and noting steps taken so far, of conditions conducive to voluntary DDRRR of the members of the armed groups concerned, in particular, by assuring the protection of the personal safety of the members of these armed groups, their civil rights and their economic reintegration including with the assistance of the donor community;


(v)  The demilitarization of Kisangani;


(vi)The full restoration of freedom of movement for persons and goods between Kinshasa and Kisangani and throughout the country;


(vii)    The full cooperation by the parties with MONUC military and logistical operations, as well as its humanitarian, human rights, and child-protection activities, including by permitting unrestricted access to ports and airports, and by refraining from introducing administrative and other impediments;


“13.Expresses its satisfaction at the partnership established with the parties to the Lusaka Ceasefire Agreement, strengthened by regular contacts between the Political Committee for the implementation of that Agreement and the Council, and reiterates its firm determination to continue to provide assistance to the parties in their efforts to achieve peace;


“14.Commends the outstanding work of MONUC personnel in challenging conditions, and pays tribute in particular to the efforts of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General;


“15.Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.”


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