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Waiting for peace in North Kivu

©

Latest update : 2008-07-21

One million displaced Congolese citizens in North Kivu, in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, are pressing for a solution to their situation as President Joseph Kabila pays a visit to France.

President Joseph Kabila of the Democratic Republic of Congo on Wednesday asked President Nicolas Sarkozy for help to win vital IMF backing for his country's economic programme, French officials said.
   
The International Monetary Fund in February decided to postpone a decision to offer loans to Kinshasa due to concerns over excessive public spending.
   
Sarkozy promised to make an effort, but told Kabila that he "should not be seeking new loans without taking into account the need to break free of other debts," said an official in the French presidency.
   
The president was referring to an agreement signed in September last year between Kinshasa and the Chinese Exim bank for 8.5 billion dollars (5.4 billion euros) to build infrastructure and develop new mines.
   
Part of the loan is backed by shares in mining interests.
   
Kabila also asked France to help train army and police forces.
   
Since Kabila's election to the presidency in October 2006, there has been a strengthening of relations between France and the central African country which has been ravaged by a decade of conflicts.
   
Last year France pledged aid of more than 200 million euros (315 million dollars) over five years for health, education and environment projects in the war-torn country.

Date created : 2008-07-16

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