UN: Four international bodies unhappy with recent clashes in Kinshasa

New York, US (PANA) - The African Union (AU), the UN, the European Union (EU) and the International Organization of La Francophonie (IOF) have expressed grave concern over the recent violent events in Kinshasa and other areas in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), where protesters and security forces clashed, resulting in loss of many lives while dozens were injured.

In a joint statement issued simultaneously in Addis Ababa, Brussels, Kinshasa, New York and  Paris, and obtained by PANA in New York on Sunday, they called on all political actors in the DRC, including the ruling party and the opposition parties, to exercise maximum restraint in their actions and statements.

The organizations urged the parties and stakeholders in the DRC to curb their supporters, in order to refrain from violence, stressing the need for DRC authorities to promote and protect human rights, and to uphold fundamental freedoms enshrined in the constitution, including when managing public order situations.

"All stakeholders, including officials of judicial and security institutions, have an individual responsibility to act in full compliance with the rule of law and human rights, and will have to face the consequences should they fail to do so," they noted.

The four regional and international organizations, also expressed their commitment to continue supporting the ongoing national dialogue, recalling that only an inclusive dialogue resulting in an agreement involving the widest range of political actors will pave the way towards peaceful and credible elections, in accordance with the DRC constitution and UN Security Council Resolution 2277 (2016).

They also urged the DRC government to remain engaged in the dialogue process, including through continued confidence-building measures, and encouragement of political groups which are not part of the current talks to play a constructive role with a view to contributing to the holding of credible elections at the earliest possible date.

Last week the International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor, Ms. Fatou Bensouda, said the ICC was monitoring the recent deadly violence in the DRC.

"In response to the violent events that have taken place over the past several days in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), as well as acts which allegedly could constitute crimes within the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court, I wish to remind one and all in the DRC that I am monitoring the situation on the ground with the utmost vigilance."

She called on all those potentially involved and on all Congolese stakeholders, on all sides, to exercise calm and restraint, and to refrain from any act of violence against persons or property.

She also called on all actors, irrespective of their official status or political affiliation, "to clearly and unequivocally urge their supporters, sympathisers and agents to refrain from commiting any act of criminal violence against individuals, and to take the necessary measures to prevent such acts from being committed".

The ICC prosecutor also noted that her office has been investigating in the DRC since 2004 and still continues to do so.

President Jospeh Kabila’s final term in office is due to expire in December 2016  per the constitution, which was adopted in 2006, and elections are due in late November, but the National Electoral Commission has said that it will not be possible to hold them then.

Since coming to power, Kabila had faced a continuous wars in eastern DR Congo and internal rebel forces allegedly supported by neighboring governments of Uganda and Rwanda.
-0- PANA AA 25Sept2016

25 september 2016 16:47:37

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