Embargoed : April 3, 2014 12:01AM EST
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Feingold, Robinson, Kobler, and Dos Santos Must Play Critical New Roles in Congo Peace Process
Washington, DC – Angola’s emergence as the regional leader of the DRC peace process has given new life to ending the world’s deadliest war since WWII, argues a new Enough Project report. The report, “Feingold, Robinson, Kobler and Dos Santos: International Keys to Peace in Congo” urges U.S. Special Envoy Russ Feingold, U.N. Special Envoy Mary Robinson, U.N. Special Representative Martin Kobler, and Angolan President José Eduardo dos Santos to build on the successes in Congo over the past year by revitalizing a two-track, inclusive peace process for Congo, with one track focusing on regional issues and the other on internal ones.
The report argues that the regional track of the peace process should focus on making sure the negotiations led by the heads of state address the security and economic drivers of the war, and that the domestic track should ensure that Congo undertakes domestic governance reforms. Both tracks should link closely to civil society, private sector, and women’s dialogues launched by UN Special Envoy Robinson.
Sasha Lezhnev, Enough Project Senior Policy Analyst and co-author of the report, said:
“The road to peace in Congo is at a critical crossroads. Now that the M23 poses a much lesser threat, there are four major roadblocks to peace: the FDLR, conflict gold and smuggling, a lack of accountability for war crimes, and Congo's frustrated elections. U.S. and U.N. Special Envoys Russ Feingold and Mary Robinson should work closely with Angolan President dos Santos to broker talks on the first three critical issues while encouraging Congolese President Kabila to not run for another term.”
John Prendergast, Enough Project co-founder and co-author of the report, said:
“The foundation for a viable, comprehensive peace process for the deadly war in the Congo is finally emerging. The obstacles, however, are daunting. Focusing on meaningful steps forward on specific issues that have fanned the flames of regional intervention will go a long way to extinguishing the fires that have burned in Congo since the 1994 Rwandan genocide spilled across their common border. Bringing an end to the FDLR, creating a clean minerals export trade, and ensuring justice for human rights crimes will remove incentives for neighboring states to destabilize Congo and instead promote peaceful, transparent cooperation throughout the region.”
Read the report, “Feingold, Robinson, Kobler and Dos Santos: International Keys to Peace in Congo”: http://enoughproject.org/files/InternationalKeystoPeaceinCongo.pdf