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DRC President Felix Tshisekedi Asks UN Peacekeepers To Pack Up

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President Felix Tshisekedi of the Democratic Republic of the Congo requested that his government expedite the departure of a United Nations peacekeeping operation so that it could start by the end of the year, he said on Wednesday at the UN General Assembly.

In order to assist in reducing instability in the eastern region of the country of Central Africa, where armed groups battle for control of territory and resources, the mission, known as MONUSCO, took over from a previous UN operation in 2010.

However, its presence has been under fire recently for what opponents claim is a failure to protect people from militia groups, which has resulted in fatal demonstrations.

Addressing an assembly, Tshisekedi in a speech said, “It is to be deplored that peacekeeping missions deployed for 25 years… have failed to cope with the rebellions and armed conflicts. This is why… I instructed the Government of the Republic to begin discussions with the UN authorities for an accelerated withdrawal of MONUSCO… by bringing forward the start of this progressive withdrawal from December 2024 to December 2023.”

An army assault on violent anti-UN protests in the eastern city of Goma last month resulted in the deaths of over 40 people and the injury of several more. A second demonstration in July 2022 left more than 15 people dead, including three peacekeepers in the cities of Butembo and Goma.

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