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DRC's Tshisekedi wants 'reduced and better armed' UN peacekeepers

DRC's Tshisekedi wants 'reduced and better armed' UN peacekeepers

Democratic Republic Of Congo

<p><strong>The president of the Democratic Republic of Congo (<span class="caps">DRC</span>), Felix Tshisekedi says his government will work with the United Nations to draw up a withdrawal plan for the <span class="caps">MONUSCO</span> peacekeeping mission.</strong></p> <p>Relations between <span class="caps">MONUSCO</span> and <span class="caps">DRC</span>’s government during Kabila’s tenure were <a href="http://www.africanews.com/2018/09/26/three-things-drc-s-joseph-kabila-told-delegates-at-united-nations/"target="_blank">tense,</a> and the latter consistently called for the implementation of a 2010 resolution that ‘required the United Nations Secretary General to prepare a withdrawal plan’.</p> <h2 style="font-size:16px;">Tshisekedi’s take on <span class="caps">MONUSCO</span></h2> <p>In his first formal meeting with diplomats held on Friday, Tshisekedi called for a “better armed” UN peacekeeping force that can operate in the restive parts of <span class="caps">DRC</span>.</p> <p>He reiterated his predecessor’s position that it was time to draw up a withdrawal plan for the <span class="caps">MONUSCO</span> peacekeeping mission, which has been present in <span class="caps">DRC</span> for 20 years.</p> <p>Tshisekedi, who was inaugurated last month says the UN troops “should be reduced and better armed and prepared” to fight the numerous rebel and militia groups which hold sway over large areas of the country.</p> <h2 style="font-size:16px;">About <span class="caps">MONUSCO</span></h2> <ul> <li>Has up to 17,000 members</li> <li>One of the biggest UN peacekeeping missions in the world</li> <li>Created in 1999 during second Congo War (operating in <span class="caps">DRC</span> for 20 years now)</li> <li>Has annual budget of $1.153 billion</li> </ul> <p>Tshisekedi said he wanted a mutual exchange with diplomats and foreign allies “as soon as possible,” but underscored Kinshasa would “protect its political independence… and sovereignty.”</p> <a style="font-size:16px; font-color:yellow;" href="http://www.africanews.com/2019/02/16/did-drc-president-ask-eu-to-lift-sanctions-on-kabila-appointees/"target="_blank"><span class="caps">ALSO</span> <span class="caps">READ</span>: Did <span class="caps">DRC</span> president ask EU to lift sanctions on Kabila appointees?</a>
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