South Africa and Belgium discuss military and security programmes in Africa


Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Lindiwe Sisulu met visiting Belgium Prime Minister Steven Vanackere, this morning. The meeting focussed on security and military programmes of both countries in the Democratic Republic of Congo(DRC), Burundi and Mozambique.

A media statement released by the Ministry of Defence and Military Veterans saysboth governments committed themselves to reviewing cooperation agreements with the DRC and working together with the government of the state under the United Nation to implement security reforms and support the establishment of a professional and credible military and other security agencies. Both countries are involved in the training of security officials and the military in the DRC.
“Our commitment to peacekeeping and security reform in the DRC is based on the principle that the DRC is a very strategic country for the development of Africa, and we are happy that the Belgium government is also fully committed to working with us and the government of the DRC to address all remaining challenges,” Sisulu said.

The two governments also committed logistical and other support to the DRC during the coming elections. “South Africa is the logistical hub of Africa, we have worked with Burundi, Sudan and Mozambique to assist them during elections, I am happy that Belgium is as committed as we are to assisting the people of the DRC to host successful elections, we are available to offer all logistical and technical support” Sisulu added.

Sisulu and Vanackere also commended the defence forces of both countries for their programmes in Burundi where they have been involved in training, integration of different rebel groups and peacekeeping, the statement continued.

They both recommitted their support to the government of Burundi and its people. “We are more than confident that the government of Burundi working with all stakeholders can build one of the best countries in Africa, we are very proud of their commitment and dedication to address their challenges.”

Both Sisulu and Vanackere agreed to review the cooperation agreements for the support of the DRC and to offer all necessary support for the enhancement of security reform programmes and integration and formalisation of all security agencies in Burundi and the DRC.