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Great Lakes leaders order DRC Congo and M23 rebels to resume talks

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September 5, 2013 (KAMPALA) - A meeting of leaders from the Great Lakes region has ordered for the resumption of peace talks between the Democratic Republic of Congo(DRC) and the M23 rebels.

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Presidents (from L) Salvar Kiir of South Sudan, Joseph Kabila of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Yoweri Museveni of Uganda and Paul Kagame of Rwanda stand during a photo opportunity before the start of the extraordinary summit of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) in Kampala September 5, 2013. (Reuters)

The leaders meeting under the auspices of the International Conference on Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) ordered that stalled talks which had been taking place in Kampala resumes in the next three days.

"The Kampala dialogue should resume within three days after this extraordinary summit and conclude within a maximum 14 days during which maximum restraint must be exercised on the ground to allow for talks to conclude", read part of a communiqué issued by the leaders.

The meeting was convened by Uganda to discuss the deteriorating security situation in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Uganda’s Museveni is the current Chair of ICGLR.

Eastern DRC was last week the scene of fierce fighting between the M23 rebels and the DRC army supported by a UN brigade mandated to use force.

The fighting has led to displacement of thousands of refugees from eastern Congo into neighbouring Uganda.

The United Nations and the DRC government accuse Rwanda of supporting the M23 rebels. Rwanda denies the charge.

The ICGLR meeting in Kampala was attended by Presidents Yoweri Museveni, Paul Kagame of Rwanda, Salva Kiir of South Sudan, Joseph Kabila of DR Congo and Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania.

(ST)

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