Congo might need European peacekeepers
European troops may be sent to the Democratic Republic of Congo if diplomacy fails.3 November 2008
LONDON - British and other European troops might be used if diplomacy fails to stop the conflict in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, a senior British government official told the BBC Saturday.
"We have certainly got to have it as an option which is developed and on the table if we need it," Mark Malloch-Brown, Minister for Africa, told the BBC.
He said that if diplomacy fails, the first step should be the deployment of United Nations troops already operating elsewhere in the Congo.
But he said European forces need to be ready to engage if the fighting in eastern Congo grows further out of control. Emergency plans for such an operation were being developed, he noted.
But he added that sending European troops to the Congo would only be an option if all other approaches failed.
"The idea of a European force is very much at the back of the line and a contingency that we hope that we will not need to be drawn on," he said.
[Dpa / Expatica]