By James Tasamba
KIGALI, Rwanda (AA) - The United Nations Stabilization Mission in Congo (MONUSCO) welcomed the signing Friday of a peace deal between the Congolese government and the Ituri Patriotic Resistance Forces (FRPI) militia group in Gety.
The agreement is expected to bring an end to nearly two decades of insecurity in Irumu territory.
Signatories included self-proclaimed militia leader Gen. Mbadu Adirodu, Governor of Ituri Jean Bamanisa and Congolese Defense Minister Aime Ngoy Mukena.
The signing was also witnessed by DR Congo Deputy Prime Minister Gilbert Kankonde.
Though details were scarce, militias’ demands include amnesty and the release of political prisoners.
Cecilia Piazza, head of the MONUSCO Bunia office said it would support disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of the ex-combatants.
“In addition to community reintegration, this programme will be accompanied by a democratic dialogue to strengthen social cohesion between communities to ensure lasting peace in southern Irumu. These efforts will be supported by the stabilization coherence fund as well as by MONUSCO in accordance with its mandate,” Actualite.cd quoted Piazza.
The UN mission also sees dialogue as the way to strengthen relations between conflict-torn communities, she added.
Adirodou said his group would be happy with the outcome of the deal if the government fully welcomes the group, according to the media report.
“We remain confident that the Congolese government will take into account our underlined issues including the amnesty and release of our political prisoners. We are committed to peace, which is why we have decided to leave the bush,” said Mbadu shortly before the signing ceremony.
The agreement is expected to pave way for “direct negotiations” between the government and the militia group as well as disarmament.
More than 1,200 militiamen, including 1,500 dependents, have been gathered at the transit site in the area since Aug. 12, 2019.