02/06/2004
Press Release
SC/8109
AFR/955


press statement on Democratic Republic of Congo by Security Council president


Following is the press statement on the Democratic Republic of the Congo delivered today by Security Council President Lauro Baja (Philippines):


The members of the Security Council heard this morning a briefing by the Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping on the situation in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo.


The members of the Council strongly condemned the fighting which arose in Bukavu recently, causing the deaths of a number of innocent civilians.  They condemned these acts of violence and the human rights violations that accompanied them, and called upon all parties involved to bring an end to these hostilities immediately.  They also condemned the incitement of hatred, especially against members of the local community, in particular those aimed at the Banyamulengué.


The members of the Council reaffirmed their full support for the peace and national reconciliation process, and for the transitional institutions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  They condemned in this regard any impediment to the reinstatement of the authority of the State on the whole territory, in particular in Bukavu, and notably to the process of establishing a national unified and integrated police and army.  They commended the restraint shown by neighbouring States to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, at the same time as recalling the terms of Security Council resolution 1493, particularly those elements relating to regional security across the Great Lakes.  They called upon them to cooperate closely with each other to strengthen the security of their common borders.


The members of the Council paid tribute to the personnel of United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC), whose rapid action was instrumental in protecting the civilian population.  They condemned the murder of a military observer, and demanded that those responsible for this crime be identified and brought to justice without delay.


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