South African Rivals Come to Terms On Blueprint to End Township Violence
JOHANNESBURG — SOUTH AFRICA'S main political groups settled some of their differences yesterday and reached consensus on a draft peace accord to end township political violence and help jump-start democracy talks.Nelson Mandela's African National Congress, Zulu Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi's Inkatha Freedom Party, and the white-led government called a multiparty conference for Sept. 14 where the draft peace accord will be adopted. "The committee agreed the accord was a firm foundation on which peace could be achieved," said Val Pauquet, spokeswoman for the church- and business-sponsored peace initiative. The blueprint for peace calls for setting up five committees to deal with issues central to ending political faction fighting which has killed 2,500 people in the past year. Two committees will oversee a code of conduct for political parties in townships and for police and Army forces deployed there. Another will monitor a socioeconomic development program for black areas, while the remaining two will implement and monitor these initiatives. The draft agrement has been sent to the leaders of the principal parties - President Frederik de Klerk, Mr. Mandela and Chief Buthelezi - for scrutiny. Smaller political parties, including those not directly involved in the conflict, will also be asked to sign. Among the proposal's main features is the setting up of a peace secretariat with legal powers and a permanent directorate. A peace committee would act as watchdog and a code of conduct would set out rules to prevent provocation or intimidation. Analysts say prospects for talks on democracy getting back on track depend largely on the accord's success. Only then would the country be able to turn to its economic problems and the writing of a nonracial constitution.