- Title: TOGO: FRANCE AND THE USA LOBBY FOR DIRECT TALKS BETWEEN ZAIRE'S WARRING PARTIES
- Date: 25th March 1997
- Summary: LOME, TOGO (MARCH 25, 1997) (REUTERS TELEVSION - ACCESS ALL) 1. LV EXTERIOR OF HOTEL 0.08 2. SV ORGANISATION OF AFRICAN UNITY FLAG 0.12 3. LV ENTRANCE OF HOTEL 0.28 4. SV/PAN CONFERENCE UNDERWAY (3 SHOTS) 0.58 5. SCU TOGO'S FOREIGN MINISTER, KOFFI PANOU, ADDRESSING AUDIENCE 1.07 6. SLV AUDIENCE LISTENING 1.11 7. SV O.A.U. SECRETARY GENERAL, SALIM AHMED SALIM, LISTENING 1.13 8. LV AUDIENCE LISTENING 1.22 9. LV PEACE DOVE SQUARE IN LOME/ PRESIDENT OF TOGO, GNASSIGBE EYADEMA ON HIS WAY TO AIRPORT 1.42 10. SLV FLAGS 1.44 11. SLV CHILDREN DANCING AND SINGING 1.51 12. SV LOME AIRPORT SIGN 1.55 13. LV PRESIDENT OF KENYA'S PLANE LANDING 2.01 14. SLV OFFICIALS SHAKING HANDS ON TARMAC 2.04 15. LV CROWDS 2.07 16. LV MOTORCADE ARRIVING 2.36 17. LV PRESIDENTS OF KENYA, (DANIEL ARAP MOI), NAMIBIA (SAM NUJOMA), AND TOGO PRIME MINISTER (IN THE MIDDLE) 2.52 18. SV CROWD DANCING/ SV/PAN POM POM GIRLS (CHEERLEADERS) PERFORMING (3 SHOTS) 3.30 Initials s3, p3 Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved.
- Reuters ID: LVA2QQZMLRXJEOZ375NBBIWS37WE
- Location: LOME, TOGO
- Country: AFRICA Togo
- Duration: 00:03:36
- Story Text: INTRO: France and the United States have lobbied for direct talks between Zaire's warring parties on the eve of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) summit in Togo. They expressed the hope the meeting would help start the dialogue.
The joint diplomatic initiative, launched to coincide with a meeting of OAU Foreign Ministers on Tuesday (March 25), included a call for a truce and a warning that without talks the conflict threatened to spread in the volatile Great Lakes region.
The United States, according to a briefing document, has urged ailing President Mobutu Sese Seko to name an individual or group to negotiate on his behalf and publicly support them. The President's authority has crumbled in the face of relentless rebel advances.
"The Lome meeting offers a chance to concretise efforts to date and perhaps make new progress in launching negotiations," the document said.
Rebel leader Laurent Kabila has sent a delegation to the summit. A delegation from Kinshasa will represent Mobutu, parliament and the caretaker government.
The Franco-American initiative, significant in that each has been accused of backing rival sides, called for all-party talks among Zaireans and an agreed electoral process to give the chaotic former Belgian colony "stable, legitimate and recognised institutions".
Kabila's rebels, who hold about a quarter of Zaire, will be attending their first major international forum.
Some critics of the summit have dismissed it as a ploy by French-speaking Africa to rescue Mobutu, who seized power in 1965 and has dominated the country since.
Mobutu's army has collapsed in the face of determined rebel thrusts on a variety of fronts.
Many ordinary Zaireans say they are eager for change after three decades of poverty under Mobutu's rule.
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- Embargoed:9th April 1997 13:00
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