DRC Monthly Humanitarian Bulletin, 18 Aug - 15 Sep 1999

from UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Published on 15 Sep 1999

Kinshasa, DRC - 15 September 99


RCD rebels signed the Lusaka cease-fire agreement on 31 August 1999 in the Zambian capital, thus joining the state parties to the conflict and MLC which endorsed the peace deal on 10 July and on 1 August 1999. The signature of the agreement by RCD vying factions became possible under a compromise formula negotiated by South Africa earlier in August. The signing of the Lusaka agreement by RCD rebels is seen as a breakthrough in a climate where there has been considerable ground for scepticism about the chances for peace. Key issues, such as the representation of RCD in the Joint Military Commission and other bodies instituted by the accord, revival of the intra-Congolese dialogue and reconciliation and the modalities of implementation of the peace deal remained to be decided in days that followed. The following is a concise chronology of the main developments that had humanitarian ramifications.

31/8 The UN Secretary General welcomed the signing of the cease-fire agreement and expressed a hope that its timely implementation would facilitate the long-awaited international support towards national recovery. SG also appealed to the donor community to contribute to the UN short-term emergency humanitarian programme in the DRC.

1/9 Within hours following the RCD signatures, disagreements arose between the Goma and Kisangani factions, with both insisting on representation in the JMC. The Lusaka agreement allowed for each signatory - then envisaged to be the states involved plus two rebel groups, the RCD and MLC- to nominate two members each to the JMC, but the compromise by which all 50 RCD founding members signed for the movement deferred consideration of JMC’s make-up.

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