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DR Congo to be rid of LRA rebels 'in days': minister
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Dec 23, 2008 - 6:26:45 PM

DR Congo to be rid of LRA rebels 'in days': minister

PARIS (AFP) The Democratic Republic of Congo expects to be rid of fighters from Uganda's rebel Lord's Resistance Army within days, the country's foreign minister said on Tuesday.

"Our troops with those from Uganda and south Sudan are fighting together against the Lord's Resistance Army militia. These operations started a week ago and are going well," Alexis Thambwe Mwamba told reporters in Paris.

"We believe that in the coming few days, we will be totally rid of Mr Kony's militiamen," he added, referring to LRA leader Joseph Kony.

Forces from Uganda, Democratic Republic of Congo and south Sudan launched joint action on December 14 against an LRA hideout in northeastern DR Congo, although Kony managed to escape the raid.

The offensive was launched after the rebel leader repeatedly refused to sign a final peace agreement with the Kampala government.

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni said Monday the attacks were successful, but a rebel spokesman said the leadership was still intact and wanted to resume peace talks.

In the past Kony has cited International Criminal Court arrest warrants against him and his lieutenants as reasons for not signing the peace accord finalised in April.

Tens of thousands of people have been killed and nearly two million displaced in two decades of fighting between the Ugandan government and the LRA, which is notorious for abducting children as soldiers and sex slaves.

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