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Press Statement
Robert Wood, Deputy Spokesman
Washington, DC
October 6, 2008


Statements by General Nkunda in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

The United States condemns and rejects the statements made by General Nkunda, leader of the National Congress for the Defense of the People (CNDP), claiming the CNDP intends to overthrow the elected and universally recognized Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (GDRC). The U.S. calls on the international community to support the GDRC as it works to consolidate its democracy and capacity to govern justly its entire territory. The U.S. opposes all those who seek to foment instability in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

The Goma Agreement and the Nairobi Communiqué remain the only true viable framework to bring stability to eastern Congo. The signatories should respect their commitments and implement them swiftly. All concerned parties should also respect the current cease fire and move quickly to disengage their forces in accordance with the UN Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s (MONUC) Global Disengagement Plan. The U.S. applauds MONUC for its efforts to stabilize eastern Congo and calls on all parties to cooperate with those efforts. Conflict between the CNDP and the DRC Armed Forces only detracts attention from resolving the root problem causing instability in the region posed by the ex-Rwandan Armed Forces (ex-FAR), the Interahamwe, and the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR).

The U.S. remains committed to supporting the GDRC and the people of the Congo to ensure a strong, democratic state, free from all illegal armed groups. At the October 3rd UN Security Council meeting on DRC, the U.S. condemned statements made by Nkunda and called for the improvement of MONUC capabilities to better carry out its mandate. The U.S. will continue to work with the DRC and the Great Lakes countries both bilaterally and through the Tripartite Plus process to strengthen regional cooperation and build a stable and prosperous region.

The U.S. will work to bring to justice those responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in eastern Congo and elsewhere.

2008/844


Released on October 6, 2008

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