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Situation in the DRC (Q&A - Excerpt from the daily press briefing - November 5, 2013)

Q : We’ve witnessed an example of a government military victory in the DRC. Could this be an early indication of what we’d like to see take place in the DRC?

A : The M23’s announcement that it would end its rebellion is first of all good news. The people of the DRC have suffered decades of violence, notably in the Kivus. Massive crimes have been committed. France has always supported MONUSCO’s role and has worked to strengthen its mandate. In order to achieve lasting peace in the Great Lakes region, we stress the urgent need for a political solution in accordance with the Addis Ababa framework agreement and UN Security Council resolutions 2076 and 2098. In accordance with these resolutions, we call for the disarmament and demobilization of the M23 and all armed groups operating in the DRC, and demand that all those responsible for the human rights violations be brought to justice.

Q : Has the UN classified everything that has taken place since 1993 in the DRC – where millions of people have been killed – as genocide?

A : One thing is certain: the scale of the human rights violations. We’ve had numerous opportunities to express our views on these crimes. There can be no room for impunity. We’ve provided significant humanitarian assistance and are supporting a certain number of initiatives in the region, including for example Dr. Mukwege’s initiative in support of women who have been victims of sexual violence. This is a key objective of our humanitarian assistance in the DRC. The minister delegate for la Francophonie visited Goma this year in order to attest to France’s action.

Q : So the term “genocide” hasn’t yet been officially used?

A : It’s not up to France to classify the nature of the crimes perpetrated in the DRC. Our role is to condemn them, to support all those who are helping the victims and to facilitate the administration of justice, notably the administration of international criminal justice.



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