The Issue of Violence in Eastern DRC at the Center of the EAC Summit in Arusha

Soukaina Sghir
Soukaina Sghir
2 Min Read
DRC

The 23rd ordinary summit of the East African Community (EAC) Heads of State is set to commence this Friday in Arusha, Tanzania. Key items on the agenda include negotiations for the admission of the Federal Republic of Somalia into the EAC and an update on the Nairobi process aimed at restoring peace in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Kinshasa hopes to secure the endorsement of the withdrawal of EAC troops, which the Congolese authorities deem ineffective.

Several heads of state have already confirmed their participation in the summit, including Kenyan President William Ruto, his Burundian counterpart and current EAC chairperson, Evariste Ndayishimiye, and Congolese President Felix Tshisekedi.

President Tshisekedi’s attendance was unexpected, as his close associates had suggested that the president, who is a candidate for reelection on December 20, would focus exclusively on his campaign in the DRC. “Perhaps his meeting earlier this week with Avril Haines, the head of U.S. intelligence, changed the situation,” murmured one of his advisers. The day before, Avril Haines was in Kigali to meet with Paul Kagame. According to a White House statement, the two heads of state “committed to reducing tensions between their two countries.”

According to sources, President Kagame will be represented by his Prime Minister, Edouard Ngirente. His Minister of Regional Cooperation, General James Kabarebe, attended the preparatory meetings. Some observers consider this a “bad sign.” James Kabarebe is mentioned in the latest UN experts’ report on the DRC, highlighting his connections to the M23 armed group operating in Eastern DRC.

Weafrica24

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