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Thursday, July 8, 1999 Published at 10:41 GMT 11:41 UK

World: Africa

Congo peace plan: the main points

The main points of the peace deal agreed by the government and rebels in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the foreign allies of both sides:

The United Nations Security Council, acting in collaboration with the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), shall constitute, facilitate and deploy an appropriate peacekeeping force in the DRC to ensure the implementation of the agreement and track down all armed groups.

The parties to the conflict will set up a Joint Military Commission (JMC) which, together with a UN/OAU observer group, will be responsible for carrying out, immediately after the deal comes into force, peacekeeping operations until the deployment of the UN peacekeeping force.

The final withdrawal of all foreign forces shall be carried out within nine months following the withdrawal schedule to be prepared by the UN, the OAU, and the JMC.

There shall be a mechanism for disarming militias, especially the Interahamwe, the Rwandan Hutu group responsible for the 1994 genocide in Rwanda and an important factor in the DRC war.

All parties have committed themselves to the process of locating, identifying, disarming and assembling all members of armed groups in the DRC.

The parties shall ensure that armed groups operating alongside their troops or on the territory under their control comply with the processes leading to dismantling of those groups.

The parties shall release persons detained or taken hostage and shall give them the latitude to relocate to any provinces within the DRC or country where their security will be guaranteed.

Immediate and unhindered access is to be given to the International Committee of the Red Cross and Red Crescent to arrange for the release of prisoners of war and the recovery of the dead and wounded.

Once the agreement is signed, the government of the DRC, the Congolese Rally for Democracy (RCD) and the Congo Liberation Movement (MLC) as well as unarmed opposition groups shall enter into open dialogue. These negotiations will be held under the aegis of a neutral facilitator to be agreed upon by Congolese parties.

The signatories to the document will be Angola, the DRC government, Namibia, Rwanda, Uganda, Zimbabwe, RCD and MLC, while witnesses will be Zambia, the OAU, the UN, and the Southern African Development Community.

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