DR Congo

Communique from Mobutu-Kabila talks

POINTE NOIRE, Congo, May 5 (Reuter) - Here is the full text in English of the official communique issued after the first direct talks between leaders of Zaire's warring parties under the mediation of South African President Nelson Mandela: On the 4th of May 1997, President Mandela met the president of the Republic of Zaire, Mr Mobutu Sese Seko, and the president of the Alliance of Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Congo-Zaire, Mr Laurent Kabila, on board the South African Ship, the SAS Outeniqua, to discuss the crisis in Zaire.
To address the situation, President Kabila proposed that:
-- The ADFLC should assume power as the transitional authority
-- The ADFLC would decide who else should be part of this authority
-- President Mobutu should cede power to such an authority
-- Termination of hostilities would be a consequence of this process.

President Kabila also handed over a document to President Mobutu containing the proposals of the ADFLC.

He also explained that as a gesture of goodwill he had ordered his troops to stop their advance on all fronts. They would, however, defend themselves and reciprocate if they were attacked.

For his part, President Mobutu proposed that the following steps be taken:
-- A ceasefire should be agreed
-- A transitional authority should be established to organise elections, including the election of a president
-- That he will hand over power to such an elected president.

After a long and frank exchange of views, it was agreed that the two sides would consider each other's proposals and communicate their conclusions to President Mandela.

It was agreed that President Mandela would convene a meeting of the two sides within eight to 10 days during which period such consideration would have taken place.

Both President Mandela and the special representative of the United Nations/Organisation of African Unity, Ambassador Mohamed Sahnoun, welcomed the decisions arrived at and expressed the hope that these would open the way for a peaceful settlement of the conflict and serve as an important encouragement to the peoples of Zaire-Congo, Africa and the world.



Reuters - Thomson Reuters Foundation
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