Press Releases

    SG/SM/9466
                AFR/1021
                8 September 2004

    Secretary-General Relieved at Release of Moroccan Soldier Serving with UN Mission in Democratic Republic of Congo

    NEW YORK, 7 September (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

    The Secretary-General is relieved to learn of the release yesterday of Private Rashid Zahidi, a member of the Moroccan contingent serving with the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC).  The Moroccan soldier had been detained by elements belonging to the Union des Patriotes Congolais (UPC) since 2 September.

    The Secretary-General concurs with the Transitional Government’s communiqué of 6 September that such an act also constituted a flagrant violation of the 14 May 2004 “Acte d’engagement” signed by the leaders of armed groups in Ituri, and calls on all concerned to recommit themselves to bring the Ituri peace process back on track.

    The Secretary-General wishes to express his appreciation to the Transitional Government for its cooperation and is grateful to his Special Representative for the Democratic Republic of the Congo and other MONUC officials for their efforts to obtain the earliest possible release of the Moroccan soldier.

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