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Africa News of Sunday, 4 April 2021

Source: GNA

UN Security Council welcomes progress in DRC, concerned over violence

The Security Council has welcomed the positive developments in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and voiced concern over violence in the east and the dire humanitarian situation in the country.

In a press statement, the members of the Security Council welcomed the efforts of President Felix Tshisekedi toward reconciliation and peace and stability in the DRC.

They further welcomed the steps he has taken to fight corruption and impunity, and encouraged further action to ensure the DRC government respects human rights and fundamental freedoms.

The Council members said they took note of the efforts toward forming a government to deliver on President Tshisekedi's commitments to pursue national unity, strengthen the rule of law, and further political inclusiveness and peacebuilding.

They also took note of President Tshisekedi's intention for that government to be composed of 30 percent of women.

They noted that political stability and security as well as increased state presence in areas of conflict are critical for the consolidation of sustainable peace in the DRC.

They encouraged the government to pursue its efforts in this regard, including by developing and implementing a national disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration framework, a security sector reform plan and a comprehensive stabilisation and conflict prevention strategy.

The Council members recalled the importance of the DRC and its neighbors working together to tackle insecurity in eastern DRC with further political commitment and more integrated approaches, including through economic cooperation and integration, and encouraged further efforts to foster sustainable economic development as a driver for regional peace and to address the root causes of conflict.

They expressed concern at the continuing inter-communal violence and at the increase of armed group activity in the eastern provinces of the DRC, particularly by the Allied Democratic Forces in North Kivu and Ituri, and numerous local armed groups in South Kivu.

They reiterated their condemnation of all armed groups operating in the country, called on all actors to end violence and their violations and abuse of international human rights and international humanitarian law.

They further expressed concern at the current humanitarian situation, marked by a significant increase in the number of people in need of protection and humanitarian assistance.

They called on the DRC government to address the underlying drivers of the current humanitarian situation and on partners to step up their support to the DRC government in tackling these challenges.

The Council members reaffirmed their strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the DRC, and reiterated their continued support and commitment for the consolidation of peace, stability and development in the DRC.

The press statement came after the Security Council held a meeting on Tuesday on the situation in the DRC and activities of the UN peacekeeping mission in the country.