Security Council Press Statement on Situation in Democratic Republic of Congo
The following Security Council press statement was issued today by Council President Ronaldo Costa Filho (Brazil):
The members of the Security Council reaffirmed their support to national and regional efforts to promote peace and stability in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Great Lakes region, building on the commitments made by the countries of the region under the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the region. They welcomed the summit hosted by President Lourenço of Angola between President Tshisekedi of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and President Kagame of Rwanda. They took note of the objectives set by the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region Road Map on the pacification process in the eastern region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and of the will to rebuild trust and to resolve their differences through dialogue, including through the Democratic Republic of the Congo-Rwanda Joint Permanent Commission and an Expanded Joint Verification Mechanism, and to continue to make use of existing subregional organizations and mechanisms. They encouraged efforts from both parties to implement the Road Map and to take all the necessary steps towards de-escalation.
The members of the Security Council welcomed the Communiqué of the Septet Summit and Third Conclave of the East African Community Heads of State on the peace and security situation in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, held on 20 June in Nairobi. They took note of steps taken to operationalize a Regional Force and stressed the importance of the protection of civilians and of coordination and information sharing with the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO). They stressed the need to carry out all operations, joint or unilateral, in strict compliance with international law, including international humanitarian law and international human rights law, as applicable.
The members of the Security Council reiterated their concern at the increase of armed group activity in the eastern provinces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, threatening to reverse hard-won progress in security and stability in the region and exacerbating the current humanitarian situation. They reiterated their strong condemnation of all domestic and foreign armed groups operating in the country.
The members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms all attacks and provocations against civilians, civilian objects and MONUSCO and underlined that deliberate attacks targeting peacekeepers may constitute war crimes under international law. They underscored that the primary responsibility of the safety and security of civilians, United Nations personnel and assets rests with host States and highlighted the importance of continued engagements and communications between MONUSCO and the Congolese Government. They called on all actors to end violence and their violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law.
The members of the Security Council called on all armed groups to immediately cease all forms of violence and urged all Congolese armed groups to participate unconditionally in the disarmament, demobilization, community recovery and stabilization programme (P-DDRCS), and foreign armed groups to immediately disarm and return to their countries of origin. They underlined the importance of supporting the progress of security sector reform in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and called on the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo to consolidate progress on the restoration of State authority and security sector reforms needed in the country.
The members of the Security Council reaffirmed their strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They reiterated their full support to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Bintou Keita, and for the stabilizing action of MONUSCO, in line with the basic principles of peacekeeping and its mandate as reflected in Security Council resolution 2612 (2021), and expressed their deep appreciation to MONUSCO’s troop- and police-contributing countries. They encouraged the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General, Huang Xia, to continue his good offices efforts in the Great Lakes region in support of a de-escalation of tensions and dialogue among all concerned parties.