Great Lakes states seek troops for force to tackle Congo rebels

KAMPALA Wed Nov 21, 2012 7:46am EST

KAMPALA Nov 21 (Reuters) - Foreign ministers from the Great Lakes region on Wednesday urged African countries to contribute troops to an international force to eliminate armed rebels in the Democratic Republic of Congo's turbulent east, a Ugandan government spokesman said.

"The meeting called on the African Union's Peace and Security Council to mandate the neutral international force and seek the support of the United Nations Security Council to deploy the neutral force," said spokesman Fred Opolot.

The Congolese and Rwandan presidents, Joseph Kabila and Paul Kagame, met on Wednesday in Kampala to try to bring an end to the conflict in eastern Congo. The rebels took control of the eastern city of Goma on Tuesday and said they planned to "liberate" the vast central African country.