Last week, on November 20, the M23 rebels seized Goma, a major city in eastern Congo, escalating the ongoing conflict and highlighting the urgency for a credible peace process. Over the weekend, the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, or ICGLR, met in Kampala for a high-level crisis summit-attended by the presidents of Congo and Uganda as well as by representatives of the M23-to discuss the increasing crisis.
As a result from the deal brokered between President Musevini of Uganda, President Kabila of Congo and representatives from the M23, the latter pledged to pull out of Goma by Friday, Novermber 30. However, early today the M23 announced that they would delay their withdrawal by 48 hours and currently remain in control of the strategic city. Even if the rebels do pull out of Goma; however, they have given no indication of plans to end their eight-month insurgency.
It has never been more clear that in order to resolve this conflict and bring an end to the cyclical regional fighting, a broadened peace process is needed that is inclusive of all parties and stakeholders. The regional process underway, without transparency or the support of local leaders and civil society, will likely result in a repeat of past agreements providing for a short-term security deal that maintains the status quo and does not address underlying drivers propelling conflict in the region.
A new Enough Project policy brief released today highlights this need for a broadened, more inclusive peace process that would be jointly mandated by the U.N., African Union, and the ICGLR. It is the first in a three-part series on the process, leverage, and ...[view whole blog post ]