Special Envoy Huang Xia briefs UN Security Council, seeks Council members continued support for the Great Lakes region
Nairobi, 13 October 2020 – The United Nations Special Envoy for the Great Lakes region, Huang Xia, today briefed the Security Council on recent developments in the region. The Special Envoy emphasized the region's leaders continued efforts to improve political, security, and economic cooperation, in line with the commitments of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and the region. The Framework Agreement was signed in Addis-Ababa, Ethiopia, on 24 February 2013 by the heads of State and Government of 13 countries, as well as by the United Nations, the African Union, the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, and the Southern African Development Community, otherwise known as the Guarantors of this process.
The Special Envoy briefed the Council members on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the people and the region's economic prospects. He also presented the UN Strategy for Peace Consolidation, Conflict Prevention, and Conflict Resolution in the Great Lakes region elaborated by his Office on the Secretary-General's request.
He pointed out that the Great Lakes situation in recent months has remained broadly stable with encouraging signs, despite the persisting challenges related to the insecurity and humanitarian crises in eastern DRC. He singled out impunity in human rights violations and criminal activities as the leading cause of insecurity. Another concern is illegal activities across borders, which fuel mistrust among the leaders of the region. The Special Envoy said there is a need for greater collaboration among the countries to combat crime and impunity effectively.
In his concluding remarks, the Special Envoy reiterated his full support to the regional efforts to bring about peace, stability, and development. At the same time, he called on the Security Council to remain engaged and maintain sustained support for the region.