Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Botswana undecided on sending troops to DRC

The Government of Botswana has not yet made a decision whether or not to send members of Botswana Defense Force for peacekeeping in the troubled eastern Democratic Republic of Congo where, a few months ago, rebel militias seeking to topple President Joseph Kabila clashed with government troops.

So far, four South African Development Community states have pledged to send troops into DRC.

Reports from the Ministry of Justice, Defense and Security suggests that talks with the high ranking security officials and cabinet have been ongoing to decide whether Botswana can take part in peacekeeping.

It is not yet clear whether Botswana will send a peace-keeping force due to certain military logistics.

The resolution will be taken after cabinet has returned from festive holidays sometime next week.

The Minister of Justice, Defense and Security, Ramadeluka Seretse, said he was aware of SADC’s plea but noted that, currently, Botswana has not yet decided whether it will participate in sending BDF to DRC or not.

He said he would not want to speculate when the decision will be made but emphasized that a decision will be taken shortly.

The Organ Troika Summit of the Heads of State and Government of SADC was held in Dar es Salaam, United Republic of Tanzania, between the 10 and 11 January 2013.

In a press release, SADC stated that, so far, four SADC countries, namely Namibia, South Africa, Malawi and Tanzania have pledged to send troops into the DRC.

The summit welcomed the United Nations support for the deployment of the Neutral International Force through the proposed UN Framework Concept for an Intervention Brigade in the eastern DRC and expressed its readiness to work with the UN.

SADC further said the summit reiterates its call for urgent attention to the grave humanitarian situation in the eastern DRC.

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