Vietnam calls for greater international support for Great Lakes Region hinh anh 1The scene of an attack in in Beni, the Democratic Republic of Congo. (Photo: AFP/ VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) –
Ambassador Dang Dinh Quy, head of the Vietnamese Permanent Mission to the United Nations, has called for stronger international support for the Great Lakes Region in Africa, for peace and sustainable development. 

The ambassador made the appeal at a video conference of the UN Security Council (UNSC) on the situation in the Great Lakes Region, including the implementation of the peace agreement, on April 22. 

Quy affirmed Vietnam’s support for the role of regional organisations in Africa and the UN, and lauded efforts of the Democratic Republic of Congo and regional countries to maintain a peaceful and cooperative environment. 

He, however, voiced concern over some security challenges in the region that have affected civilians, especially when the COVID-19 pandemic is spreading in this area. 

The root of the instability must be settled by comprehensive measures, he said, calling for greater efforts in diplomacy, reconciliation, restraining activities of armed groups and facilitating development in countries. 

Huang Xia, Special Envoy of the UN Secretary‑General for the Great Lakes Region, delivered a report on the implementation of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Region.

He said the political and security situation in the region has seen positive developments, with the Democratic Republic of Congo resolving to enhance cooperation with regional countries to stabilise security and normalise relations. 

However, challenges remain, especially activities of armed groups and impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on humanitarian activities, which have hampered the progress, he cautioned. 

Xia also affirmed the UN’s commitment to coordinating with partners in stabilising the situation and bringing peace and development to the region. 

Other UNSC members also applauded efforts to stabilise the situation, build up trust and intensify cooperation in the region, including those in easing tensions between Rwanda and Uganda.

Given the impacts of COVID-19, the UNSC issued a press statement calling on regional countries to step up coordination in order to prevent unnecessary impacts, and backing Xia’s suspension of some activities regarding the implementation of the agreement amidst the pandemic spread. 

The UNSC’s main concern in the Great Lakes Region lies with the implementation of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Region signed by 13 regional countries in 2013 to maintain peace and cooperation after prolonged tensions and conflicts in the region./.