Rubavu — The International Conference on Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) has called on stakeholders to come up with a mechanism of regulating the exploitation of minerals in the region.
The member states are holding talks on illegal exploration of regional minerals in Rubavu with an aim of establishing a protocol against the vice.
"This issue of illegal exploitation of minerals has been a great challenge, causing instability and conflict in the region.
There is a need of having a mechanism of regulating the exploitation of the minerals," Liberta Mulamula, the Executive Secretary of ICGLR told the conference during the opening session
According to Mulamula, the body will be providing a certificate of origin for all minerals to avoid armed groups gaining access to natural resources to continue causing tension in the region.
"Armed groups like FDRL Interahamwe are exploiting the minerals illegally, that continues to be the source of conflict in the region," she added.
Speaking to The New Times, Eugene Munyakayanza the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said that regulating mineral exploitation will undermine the strength of many militia groups that operate in the DR Congo.