Arming Africa: Peace force reschedules meeting as events overtake plans

Gisenyi - The United States military said yesterday that a meeting in Germany of countries participating in a Canadian-led force to help refugees in Zaire had been rescheduled to a day later than originally planned.

"I have been told that the meeting will be on Thursday," said US Navy Captain Timothy Taylor, director of public affairs for the US European Command in Stuttgart. The European Command will host the meeting, to be led by Canada.

In Kinshasa the European Union envoy Aldo Ajello said yesterday that Europe could not recognise the authority of the Rwandan-backed Zairean rebels who have taken over a strip along the eastern frontier.

He also suggested that the planned international force for Zaire should have the mandate to help the government to reassert its authority in the area.

Britain, France and Spain said earlier yesterday that they expected the mission to go ahead with a redefined plan to open up humanitarian corridors to aid refugees.

After three days at full flood, the flow of refugees out of Zaire into Rwanda slowed yesterday, with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees estimating that some 500,000 Hutu refugees were already home. "We have a 60-km human caterpillar moving from Gisenyi to the other side of Ruhengeri," a UNHCR spokesman, Ray Wilkinson, said.

Zaire's Tutsi rebels, who have close links with Kigali, also announced they would open a corridor in the Bukavu region so that tens of thousands of other refugees could also return.

More than 200 refugees were chased from a Red Cross hospital in Gisenyi by men wielding sticks on the orders of the Rwandan government. They were loaded into a lorry and taken to a refugee camp further inland. The attack came as the Medecins sans Frontieres charity announced 50 confirmed cases of cholera among the refugees.

Meanwhile, a Swiss Foreign Ministry spokesman said yesterday that Switzerland has denied a visa to Zaire's ailing ruler, Mobutu Sese Seko, who is in France and wants to return to the country for medical treatment.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: HR Assistant

£17447 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This organisation is a leading centre fo...

Recruitment Genius: Trainee Case Handler

£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Trainee Case Handler is requi...

Recruitment Genius: Junior Sales Apprentice

£15000 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £20,000 - £60,000

£20000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Day In a Page

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence