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Tuesday, 9 April, 2002, 12:39 GMT 13:39 UK
Angola: Is the war over?
Angola is edging closer to peace.

A ceasefire agreement is scheduled to be signed on Thursday, formally ending 25 years of civil war.

The two sides have resolved a number of military questions, including plans for the demobilisation of 50,000 UNITA soldiers.

Rebel fighters will also be given amnesty if, as is likely, Parliament approves the move.

However, it is not certain whether peace will return to the troubled country.

Will UNITA be able to convince all of its armed members to give up their weapons? Does the government want peace, or would it prefer to keep the war going as an excuse not to develop the country?

This debate is now closed. Read a selection of your comments below.

Your reaction

The death of Savimbi is a catalyst for change

Rob Crossan, UK
The enduring tragedy of Angola is the vast natural resources of the land being utterly abused. Soil is fertile, oil and diamonds are in abundance. The humanitarian disaster is one of the few in Africa where war and terrorism are 100% culpable rather than any natural drought or flood. The death of Savimbi is a catalyst for change. However a fundamental alteration in the mindset of dos Santos and the MPLA is needed if societal rebuilding is to take precedence over megalomania as the government's foremost priority.
Rob Crossan, UK

I went through Angola in 1992 and it was at the time the Lisbon Peace Accord was being implemented. Most of my friends in the UK are Angolans and would like to see change in their country. I am very positive that peace in Angola will drive peace in Congo/Kinshasa, my country.
Philippe Mandngi, London, UK

I do believe that this time peace has come to stay

Benjamin Tchiyevo, Angola
I am an Angolan living in the USA. I congratulate all Angolans for the maturity they have shown to the world. I do believe that this time peace has come to stay. May God bless Angola and its people. May Angola one day be a place of love, peace, responsibility, freedom and forgiveness.
Benjamin Tchiyevo, Angola

I congratulate Angola on showing other African leaders that peace is an option. I will soon be visiting the country on business and am looking forward to it.
Anthony, Norway

Let the international community aid the rebuilding of this beautiful and potential-filled country. However, landmines remain a huge obstacle - making rich fertile land go untouched and rendering the population hungry.
Muchiri K, Kenya

Hopefully peace will prevail

Paulo Mendes, Portugal
I was born in Angola and fled the country in 1975. I dreamt of returning and rediscovering my birthplace. Hopefully peace will prevail and my dream will become a reality... God Bless Angola!
Paulo Mendes, Portugal

I genuinely hope that the Angolan civil war is finally over now. We all know that it will take great effort and commitment on the part of the government and the leaders of UNITA to implement the peace process in a society that has been torn by war for the last forty years. However, I believe that the widespread suffering of millions over four decades will be replaced by the hope of finally building a country that will accept all citizens equally.
Helder Ponte, Canada

The Angolan government and Africa in general welcomes this opportunity

Matthias Kulubya, London, UK
The demise of Jonas Savimbi has brought peace to Angolans. The UNITA combatants have no problems with laying down their arms. They have long wanted to do so but the fear of Dr Jonas Savimbi and his machinery made it impossible. The Angolan government and Africa in general welcomes this opportunity. May God bless the people of Angola.
Matthias Kulubya, London, UK

We hope so. If that is the case then let's give them a helping hand. It's good for Africa as a whole.
Metabecke Robert, USA

I am hopeful and praying that the on going dialogue between UNITA and the government delegates will bring a lasting peace to the impoverished peoples of that country, but I also have my fears. The rebels at this point may be in disarray and may want to use this talk to regroup and reorganise their house. We experienced the same in Sierra Leone and also in neighbouring Liberia where the rebels signed numerous peace deals only to turn back and kick against them. So the Angolan government has to be watchful.
Denis Saidu, Sierra Leonean living in the US

It should be the prayer of all men of goodwill to see that peace reigns in the war-torn country of Angola. With the requisite political will on the part of both the government and the surviving leaders of UNITA, a truly durable peace should be possible now that the old stumbling block, Savimbi is no more.
Mike Ikhariale, USA

Angolans need peace to develop this rich beautiful country. However, it cannot be done smoothly without democratic means. Elections need to be held as soon as possible to provide a genuine mandate for the government so that it can embark on economic, political, cultural and social development. As I look at the UNITA representatives, they look famished. They need food, shelter and a sense of belonging in order to fully participate in a new Pax Angolana.
Faith Shababili, Cabinda Enclave, Angola

I truly believe that this is everlasting peace

Luis Lelis, Angola
Angolans have shown the world that we can solve our "profound" differences and sit together. I just hope that the so-called troika and the UN do not come back to mess everything all over again. I truly believe that this is everlasting peace.
Luis Lelis, Angola

After so many years of war, it's finally time to give peace a chance.
Eddie Mandhry, Kenya

There is every likelihood now, with the death of Savimbi, that peace will return to Angola. It may not be today, but certainly that light at the end of the tunnel is much brighter now than before.
Chibamba Douty, Zambian Student in Brunei Darussalam

Of course I believe my land and its people will live in peace. One has to believe that there is an end for everything. In my understanding, the causes of the on-going war here in Angola, has been, to some extent, the fault of foreign countries. Now that my countrymen have sat by themselves at the table inside the country in order to find a common ground, things have really been put in a better perspective. Now it's only fair to say: Shame on all those who have predicted failure. May God bless Angola, and its people!
Avelino Antonio Kalunda, Angola

As an African-American I am very and if not more so appreciative of peace in my motherland than any where else. Africa will have the resources in future and until we as Africans unite and become part of this world as one I see nothing but positives. Angola do your thing (PEACE) and maybe others will follow (Middle East) and other African countries. I Love Africa!
Mosaic, USA

What is very wonderful about this agreement is that it was not brokered by the UN or EU. Not even by OAU. Who says African leaders cannot become sane persons? African leaders wake up fully to your responsibilities. You are there to make life easy for your people. Stop all wars generated by greed!
Kolawole Raheem, Finland

Hope this time UNITA has the responsibility to bring peace to our country, not to rearm again and blow our country again destroying all the few thing that we rebuilt.
Sardinha, Angola

Jonas Savimbi, killed after 26 years of civil war

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See also:

02 Apr 02 | Africa
31 Mar 02 | Africa
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