As the deadline for the disarmament of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda rebel group passed the UN Security Council is calling for joint military action to neutralize the FDLR in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
UNITED NATIONS, January 9 (Sputnik) – The UN Security Council is calling for joint military action to neutralize the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as the deadline for the disarmament of the FDLR rebel group has passed.
The Security Council's presidential statement released Thursday "reiterates the need to put into sustained action the plans of the FARDC [Congolese army] and MONUSCO [United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the DRC] through its Force Intervention Brigade…to neutralize the FDLR by commencing military operations immediately".
According to the statement, the FDLR has not only "failed to unconditionally and fully surrender and demobilize" by the January 2nd deadline set by the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC), but has also "continued to recruit new fighters in their ranks".
The UN Security Council stressed that while the disarmament of rebel groups in the DRC is important, it is also crucial to address the root causes of the conflict in the east of the country and develop "a comprehensive approach to restore peace and stability in the affected areas".
The FDLR, a Rwandan Hutu nationalist rebel group, has been active in the east of the DRC since 2000.
MONUSCO was established in the DRC in 1999 and has been working with the country's government to destroy dozens of rebel groups operating in eastern DRC.