Friday, November 28, 2008

Diplomats Talk, Refugees Walk

In New York
The UN Security Council yesterday discussed changing MONUC's mission to focus more intensively on peacebuilding in the east. The French ambassador and Belgian foreign minister lobbied the Council to give MONUC the capacity to deal with illegal resource exploitation, take more forceful action against rebel groups, and gradually transfer its activities to the east by giving bilateral partners responsibility over government-controlled territory in the west. (At present, only about 5,000 of MONUC's 17,000 troops are located in the Kivus.)

Meanwhile, back at the Ranch
Congolese civilians caught in the cross-fire between rebel groups, militias, and government soldiers in the east continued to flee the violence towards Uganda. Approximately ten thousand new Congolese refugees arrived in the district of Kamungu, where UNHCR is already dealing with 27,000 people displaced since the beginning of the war in North Kivu.

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