Study – Central Africa and Belgium – What solidarity relations for tomorrow?

Central Africa and Belgium – What solidarity relations for tomorrow? Patrick Balemba Batumike, Justice & Peace.

The Justice and Peace Commission releases a study questioning THE relations between Belgium and Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda. This research is based on the rich historical capital and the premise of recognized Belgian expertise on Central Africa.

What remains of the human ties that bind these countries? What are the solidarity mechanisms for the future between Belgium and its former colonies? What are the diplomatic mechanisms that continue to link them, sometimes in a very unbalanced way? How could these countries better approach their common past, in light of the suffering experienced and the work of memories that are barely emerging?

Our research attempted to decipher societal dynamics as well as imaginations in their historical and cultural dimensions in order to define perspectives towards political-economic interconnections based on equitable relationships.

Will the work of memory initiated by Belgium around its colonial past still influence concerted, respectful and fair historical justice? How can we understand the issues that constantly permeate the current rapprochement, in particular international cooperation, as well as the place of diasporas and people of Afro-descendants in Belgian society? How can we build together the memory of the colonial and neocolonial past in such a way as to strengthen justice between Belgium and its former colonies?

Our study contributes to building answers to these questions.

Expert on the issues of international conflicts, and convinced of the need for memory work with a view to reconciliation, Justice & Peace regularly addresses the decolonial issues of Belgium. Training “Decolonization, between memory and reconciliation”, conference “Fight against the culture of impunity in eastern Congo, challenges and perspectives”, working with our volunteer groups on the decolonization of Belgian public space, etc.

We are relying on our strong links with associative partners from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Burundi and Belgium to tackle this time the future of relations between these countries.

This study seeks to outline future interactions between the four countries, and will interest all people directly or indirectly concerned with colonial history and relations between Belgium and the three countries of the Great Lakes region..

Patrick Balemba Batumike, research and animation officer at the Justice and Peace Commission

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