Minister of State Lenihan welcomes cessation of violence in Northern Uganda
Minister of State for Development Cooperation and Human Rights, Conor Lenihan T.D., welcomed the coming into force today of a cessation of violence between the Government of Uganda and the Lord's Resistance Army rebels in Northern Uganda. Uganda is one of Irish Aid's priority countries.
Minister Lenihan said:
“Ireland and the EU have always advocated a peaceful resolution of the brutal conflict in Northern Uganda, which has resulted in over 100,000 deaths, 2 million people displaced and 25,000 abducted children forced into military service in the last 20 years. Therefore, I welcome the signature on 26 August in Southern Sudan of a cessation of violence agreement between the Government of Uganda and the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA). Full implementation of this agreement will be an important step towards a lasting solution to the conflict.
I join Jan Egeland, the UN's Emergency Relief Coordinator, in urging the LRA to release immediately all abducted women and children as a sign of goodwill.
I urge both parties and the mediator to continue their joint efforts to reach a comprehensive peace agreement which would allow the people of Northern Uganda to once again enjoy peace and stability and return to their homes. This agreement should be in accordance with Uganda's obligations to the International Criminal Court and under international law.”
Note to editors:
Irish Aid has been involved in Uganda since 1994. The programme provides support for the health, education and justice sectors, along with HIV/AIDS, rural development and governance.
Support for good governance is a key component of the Irish Aid programme in Uganda, underpinning the entire development partnership. Through engagement with Government and civil society, Irish Aid is actively involved in the areas of conflict resolution, human rights, democratization and anti-corruption.
29th August 2006