Military Reform: Agreement on Ending Hostilities in the Republic of Congo

AGREEMENT ON ENDING HOSTILITIES IN THE REPUBLIC OF CONGO

(29 DECEMBER 1999)

Chapter IV: From the Security Forces

Political stability and peace closely depend on the solutions brought to security issues in general and to the Security Forces in particular.

The status, composition, command and the establishment of the Security Forces must guarantee the stability of institutions, peace, the mutual trust of all brothers in arms in general, and the signatories of this agreement in particular, who undertake to fully contribute to the process of the imperative reorganisation of the Security Forces, while also focusing on issues relating to rebuilding careers.

Article 6: The signatories of this agreement demand:

The reorganisation of the Security Forces;

The unconditional reinstatement into the Security Forces, reprising the same rank they held on June 5th 1997, of soldiers, gendarmes, and other civilian personnel who have joined their respective body no later than the date on which this agreement is signed;

An end to all military action against the FADR signatories of this agreement;

Recruitment into the Security Forces and reintegration into society of FADR members.

Chapter V: From the Government of the Republic

Article 7: The signatories of this agreement recommend:

The establishment of a National Committee for the Reorganisation of the Security Forces.

Implementation History

2000

Full Implementation

Military reform provisions of the agreement involved the reorganization of armed forces, including the unconditional reinstatement of those soldiers who left the armed forces to the same rank and the recruitment of Forces for Self Defence and Resistance into security forces. The reorganization of the armed forces was much needed because of the disintegration of the Congolese Armed Forces (FAC), which started with the outbreak of hostilities in June 1997 as military officers and soldiers loyal to the previous regimes deserted the armed forces and joined different militia groups.1 Major combatant groups, such as the Ninjas, Cobras, and Cocoyes, were affiliated with the Congolese Movement for Democracy and Integral Development (MCDDI) headed by former Prime Minister Kolélas, the Congolese Labor Party (PCT) by headed by Sassou-Nguesso, and the Pan-African Union for Social Democracy (UPADS) headed by former President Lissouba, respectively. Among the 30,000 ex-combatants, it was estimated that 6,000 belonged to the armed forces (military, gendarme, and police). Those in the military were mostly disqualified because they did not meet basic education, age, or fitness requirements. The reform sought to disarm and demobilize those combatants.2

The integration of soldiers who were formerly in militia groups started immediately after the signing of the accord. The government was obliged by the accord it signed to reinstate all former rebels who had been soldiers. The accord also gave a kind of promise that those who had not been soldiers but militia members would be accepted into the FAC.

In February 2000 the government announced that it would not be possible to integrate all of the ex-fighters into the armed forces. Only 500-1,200 former Ntsiloulous were incorporated into the military.3 An estimated 3200-5200 ex-Cobras were accepted into the army between 1997 and 2002.4 Finally, an estimated 700-1600 ex-Cocoyes were able to join the armed forces.5

  • 1. R. Anders Nilsson, “Dangerous Liaisons: Why Ex-Combatants Return to Violence. Cases from the Republic of Congo and Sierra Leone” (PhD diss., Department of Peace and Conflict Research, Uppsala University, 2008).
  • 2. Nelson Alusala and Guy Lamb, “Emerging Human Security Issues in the Planned Implementation of MDRP Fund in the Republic of Congo (RoC),”(paper contribution to DDR and Human Security: Post-conflict Security-building in the Interests of the Poor, University of Bradford, July 2008).
  • 3. Anders Themner, Violence in Post-Conflict Societies: Remarginalization, Remobilization and Relationships (London: Routledge, 2011), 56.
  • 4. Ibid., 66.
  • 5. Ibid., 77.
2001

Full Implementation

No further developments observed. 

2002

Full Implementation

No further developments observed. 

2003

Full Implementation

No further developments observed. 

2004

Full Implementation

No further developments observed. 

2005

Full Implementation

No further developments observed. 

2006

Full Implementation

No further developments observed. 

2007

Full Implementation

No further developments observed. 

2008

Full Implementation

No further developments observed. 

2009

Full Implementation

No further developments observed.