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EAC, DR Congo sign agreement for deployment of joint regional force

The file photo shows delegates posing for a group photo during the 12th edition of the Armed Forces Command Post Exercise of the East African Community (EAC) in Jinja, Uganda, Nov. 7, 2019. (Photo by Hajarah Nalwadda/Xinhua)

The East African Community and the Democratic Republic of the Congo signed an agreement for the deployment of an EAC joint regional force to fight negative forces in the bloc's new member.

DAR ES SALAAM, Sept. 11 (Xinhua) -- The East African Community (EAC) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) on Friday signed an agreement for the deployment of an EAC joint regional force to fight negative forces in the bloc's new member.

A statement issued late Friday by the EAC headquarters in Tanzania's northern city of Arusha said the agreement was signed by the EAC secretary general, Peter Mathuki, and DRC's Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Christophe Lutundula Apala Pen'Apala, and witnessed by DRC President Felix Tshisekedi in DRC's capital Kinshasa.

Peter Mathuki, secretary general of the East African Community (EAC), speaks during an interview with Xinhua at the headquarter of EAC in Arusha, Tanzania, on May 20, 2022. (Photo by Herman Emmanuel/Xinhua)

Mathuki said the agreement is in support of the implementation of the decision of the 22nd summit of the EAC heads of state to deploy a joint regional force to fight the negative forces in the DRC.

"The agreement envisages an initial deployment of the EAC joint regional force for a period of six months after which the deployment will be evaluated," said Mathuki.

President Tshisekedi thanked the EAC for the deployment of the joint regional force, saying that instability in his country has been ongoing for over two decades.

"My highest wish is for the regional force to be successful and allow the country to turn over and focus on the economic and social growth of the country that will see it transform and shine in front of the world," said Tshisekedi.