Friday, January 30, 2009


Zimbabwe is still in a pickle of a situation. With 2 billion percent inflation, billion Zim Dollar notes, more than 3,000 cholera deaths (60,000 others infected), famine and hunger, no working unity government, closed universities, hospitals turning people away—the people are suffering. SADC has finally said that they want to swear in Tsvangirai by the 13th of next month. So they are moving to that. Still we have yet to see if Tsvangirai will agree to that without a proper sharing of government power in a way that promotes security and economic change. Actually, the MDC denounced the agreement to swear in Tsvangirai on the 11th and appoint ministers as agreed by SADC in November. They challenge the unanimity of this SADC agreement reached on the 27th of Jan as declared by South African President Motlanthe. But Tsvangirai, candidate of the MDC, did say he agreed to this. So there may be infighting in the MDC which has not gained any of the key ministries or clear definitions of prime ministerial and presidential roles that it had requested since the last agreement. So since this is a similar agreement, perhaps people in the MDC do disagree with it and are not ready to given in. We will see.

The LRA is still doing their business and did some recent raids on DRC towns. They are still at large. However, General Nkunda has been captured (last week)! Kinshasa and Kigali came together and worked together to capture him while he was on the run. We hope the partnership (haven’t seen it before) between Rwanda and the Congolese army continues, and the next step is to see how this affects the future.

The Economist reports that perhaps Kagame (president of Rwanda) was embarrassed by reports of the connections between himself, his country, and Nkunda (general of the National Congress for the Defense of the People CNDP who said he was fighting to protect East Congolese Tutsi from the Hutu genocide soldiers of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR). Even Britain threatened to cut off aid to Rwanda if they didn’t do something and cut ties.

Kagame and Kabila (DRC Pres) agreed to a swap. Kagame would capture Nkunda and remove him from Eastern Congo (actually I think they were supposed to hand him over) and the DRC would incorporate the CNDP soldiers into the Congolese army after Rwanda broke it up. The DRC would also let Rwandan troops come over the border to destroy the Hutu FDLR. And they wouldn’t tell the UN peacekeeping soldiers anything in advance (surprise!). It seemed like a good deal for DRC who had lost faith in the UN peacekeeping force and needed a way to promote and make peace in the eastern part of his country where he had lost control.

Now, we wait and see.

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