Military of the Democratic Republic of the Congo

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Image:Flag of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.svg
Military of Democratic Republic of Congo
Military branchesArmy, Navy, Air Force
Military manpower
Availabilitymales ages 18-49: 11,052,696 (2005 est)
Fit for military servicemales age 18-49: 5,851,292 (2005 est.)
Active troops97,800 (Ranked 44th)
Military expenditures
Dollar figure $93.5 million (2004)
Percent of GDP 1.5% (2004)

The military of the Democratic Republic of Congo is currently in the rebuilding process after the Second Congo War officially ended in July 2003. Rwandan- and Ugandan-created militias have hampered the formation of the new national army by their refusal to disband. The military is one of the most unstable in the region after years of war and underfunding. It is prone to defections. The government in Kinshasa and the U.N. are attempting to create a viable force with the ability to perform all tasks it is entrusted with, the most important being bringing stability and security to the nation.

There are currently over 16,000 United Nations peacekeepers based in Congo, the United Nations Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo, to assist Congolese authorities in maintaining security. In recent events the military has made it clear to Rwanda and Uganda they will defend their borders from any future incursions by either nation, which could further strain attempts to rebuild the nation's already battered security structure.

[edit] Organization

The current organization of the Congo's military establishment is very vague owing to lack of information; it has been made more difficult because of the current reforms being undertaken by the Congo security forces. It is known to be broken up into the Army, Navy and Air Force; however, no official names seem to be available owing to the reform process. In addition to the three standard parts, the military of the DRC is also comprised of a Republican Guard, formerly known as the Special Presidential Security Group (GSSP).

[edit] Resources

A key issue for the Congo's military is the lack of resources. The lack of money restricts the capabilities by not allowing the proper training, payment and weapons to be given to the military. It has been an ongoing issue ever since the U.S. and most of its allies cut support for the government of Mobutu at the end of Cold War and the increasing amount of human rights abuses carried out by his security forces. Although the Democratic Republic of the Congo maintains vast natural resources its economy has been torn apart by conflict and corruption. The infrastructure has been widely destroyed, thereby restricting the mobility and logistical ability of any new Congolese national military establishment.

[edit] References and links

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