21 Dec, KINSHASA- The United Nations voiced alarm on Tuesday over a wave of arrests in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where tensions were running high after President Joseph Kabila’s term in office expired.
Maman Sambo Sidikou, the head of the UN mission in DR Congo, said it had documented 113 arrests of opposition leaders and civil society activists, human rights campaigners and journalists by state police or intelligence officials since December 16.
“I am gravely concerned by the arrests of those who seek to express their political views,” said Sidikou, who is also the UN secretary general’s special representative to the country.
“I urge the national authorities to strictly adhere to their international human rights obligations, to create a climate of political tolerance and respect at this important juncture in the DRC’s history, and to grant full access to United Nations personnel to all detention centres.”
His call comes amid fears of fresh violence after the end of Kabila’s second and final mandate, with no sign he was ready to leave or hold new elections. -(AFP)