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Monday, May 24, 1999 Published at 15:04 GMT 16:04 UK

World: Africa

Peace key to unlocking African economies

President Kabila of DR Congo and President Moi of Kenya arrive

The Kenyan President, Daniel Arap Moi, has told East and Southern African heads of state that war is preventing the region competing in the global economy.

Addressing a summit in Nairobi of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa), President Moi said the trade grouping would not achieve its objectives if "brother is rising against brother".

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"Peace is a critical ingredient of the further achievements of Comesa," he said.

"Solutions to African problems must come from Africa."

One of the first heads ofstate to arrive in Nairobi was President Laurent Kabila of the Democratic Republic of Congo, whose country is currently in the grip of civil war.

Also present are the Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and Namibian President Sam Nujoma, who are backing President Kabila in his conflict with rebel forces.

They will come face to face with Ugandan Preident Yoweri Museveni and the Rwandan Prime Minister Pierre Celestin Rwigyema who are supporting the rebels cause.

South Africa blamed

Many Comesa member states want to establish a counterweight to South Africa's economic domination of the region.

They accuse South Africa of flooding their markets with subsidised goods.

South Africa is the leading member of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the region's other main trading bloc.

Heads of state are also attending the summit from Burundi, Djibouti, Kenya, Malawi, Sudan, Tanzania and Zambia.

Other member countries are being represented at ministerial level.

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