Rice Consults with African Leaders on Regional Conflicts
06 December 2007
Outlines U.S. commitment to peace, democracy and prosperity in Africa
Washington -- Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said a comprehensive cease-fire agreement between Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government (TFG) and nonextremist political groups will help facilitate the delivery of much-needed humanitarian aid in the country and urged the TFG to “renew and revitalize efforts towards a lasting political solution.”
Rice was speaking December 5 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where she met with African and international leaders to discuss ongoing conflicts on the continent. During her meetings, she outlined the U.S. commitment to seeking peace, building democracy and fostering prosperity in conflict regions including the Great Lakes, Sudan and the Horn of Africa.
A cease-fire agreement in Somalia that includes key involved parties, such as clan and business leaders, “would be an important step in helping to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian assistance, and would reduce the level of violence and create the conditions for longer-term security sector reform,” Rice said. She also called for resumption of the transitional political process leading to national elections in Somalia in 2009.
Regarding the conflict in Sudan, Rice described the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) as an historic accord that ended 21 years of brutal civil war and said it provides the best framework for a peaceful, democratic Sudan. She called on all entities in Sudan to end the violence in Darfur. She also encouraged Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi to send Ethiopian troops pledged to the United Nations Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) as soon as possible, and to work with Khartoum to allow UNAMID deployments, including non-African troops, to move forward unhindered.
Rice said the United States remains committed to providing needed humanitarian assistance to the conflict areas of eastern Congo and the Great Lakes region as a whole, and reiterated U.S. commitment to the Great Lakes partners in forging a peaceful, democratic and prosperous future for their people.
“We look forward to the full and rapid implementation of provisions of the November 9 Nairobi communiqué as a major step toward eliminating the threat of violence [in the Great Lakes region],” she said.
(USINFO is produced by the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)
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