Friday, 30 January 2015

Belgium MoFA: Democratic Republic of the Congo


 Press Release

Minister Reynders welcomes start of FARDC military operations against FDLR

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders welcomes the announcement, today, of the start of the military operations by the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (FARDC), with the support of MONUSCO, against the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR). These operations are necessary to neutralize this armed group, and to force it to disarm, as the FDLR refused to demobilize completely and unconditionally within the 6 month delay that was granted to it by the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (CIRGL) and the South African Development Community (SADC).

Didier Reynders fully supports the process of demobilization and reintegration of former FDLR fighters, but insists that FDLR leaders who committed serious human rights violations will be held accountable.

Minister Reynders reminds all parties that they must respect the rules of international humanitarian law, to protect the civilian population from violence at all times. He is grateful to all humanitarian workers and UN, international and national organizations that provide humanitarian assistance to all civilians in extremely difficult conditions.