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Obasanjo agrees Nigeria peacekeepers for DRC

Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo said in Johannesburg on Wednesday that he could forsee a role for Nigerian peacekeeping troops in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as part of a collaborative peace initiative with South Africa.

Obasanjo, in South Africa to attend the inauguration of President Thabo Mbeki, told a news conference that “under the right auspices and the right conditions,” a Nigerian peacekeeping force could be dispatched to DRC.

“We would like to see a situation where we can help a country like the Congo to help itself and where troops from other countries can be withdrawn. We can help to achieve this,” he said.

Obasanjo, who was a senior officer in Nigeria’s first UN peacekeeping mission to the Congo in the early 1960s, added: “Congo has a rebellion on its hands and African countries are sending troops in on opposite sides. That’s unfortunate and not helping things.”

Outlining a new joint approach with South Africa to conflict resolution on the continent, Obasanjo said: “With the conflicts on-going in Africa today, unless we really cooperate there is no way we can see an end to most of them.

“Our two countries can be instruments of assistance and a vanguard of hope for the management and resolution of conflicts,” he added.

This article was produced by IRIN News while it was part of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Please send queries on copyright or liability to the UN. For more information: https://shop.un.org/rights-permissions

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