SECURITY COUNCIL CONDEMNS 'INTERVENTION OF FOREIGN FORCES' IN REPUBLIC OF CONGO, CALLS FOR EARLY WITHDRAWAL

16 October 1997
SC/6429

SECURITY COUNCIL CONDEMNS 'INTERVENTION OF FOREIGN FORCES' IN REPUBLIC OF CONGO, CALLS FOR EARLY WITHDRAWAL

16 October 1997

Press ReleaseSC/6429

SECURITY COUNCIL CONDEMNS 'INTERVENTION OF FOREIGN FORCES' IN REPUBLIC OF CONGO, CALLS FOR EARLY WITHDRAWAL

19971016 Presidential Statement Seeks End to Hostilities, Cooperation With International Mediators; Foresees Possible United Nations Presence

The Security Council this evening condemned "all external interference in the Republic of the Congo, including the intervention of foreign forces". It called for the immediate withdrawal of all foreign forces, including mercenaries.

In a statement read out by its President, Juan Somavia (Chile), the Council, expressing deep concern about the grave situation in the Republic of the Congo, called for an immediate end to all hostilities and asked all States in the region to support a peaceful resolution of the conflict.

The Council further called on the parties to cooperate with the International Mediation Committee chaired by the President of Gabon and with the Joint United Nations/Organization of African Unity Special Envoy in reaching rapid agreement on peaceful transitional arrangements leading to the holding of democratic and free elections with the participation of all parties. It said the Council might consider the possibility of a United Nations presence, on the basis of recommendations by the Secretary-General.

Before it met this evening, the Council had before it a letter dated 13 October from the Permanent Representative of the Republic of the Congo (document S/1997/791) in which he requested an emergency meeting of the Council so that it could "take the requisite preventive measures" to halt actions which undermined the territorial integrity and national sovereignty of that country. The letter charged that "a convoy of heavily armed men had entered Congolese territory" from Cabinda Province in the Republic of Angola. The convoy was deployed in the town of Kimongo, where it took district administrative and police officials hostage and seized all weapons at the police stations and military posts.

Also before the Council was a letter dated 13 October from the Democratic Republic of the Congo requesting an urgent meeting to consider the intensifying mortar attacks on Kinshasa from Brazzaville (document S/1997/790).

The meeting was called to order at 5:59 p.m. and adjourned at 6:00 p.m.

Security Council - 2 - Press Release SC/6429 3823rd Meeting (PM) 16 October 1997

Presidential Statement

The full text of the presidential statement, to be issued as document S/PRST/1997/47, reads as follows:

"The Security Council is deeply concerned about the grave situation in the Republic of the Congo and calls for an immediate end to all hostilities. It deplores the loss of life and the deteriorating humanitarian situation and calls upon all parties to ensure the safety of the civilian population and the safe and unrestricted delivery of humanitarian assistance.

"The Security Council calls upon all States in the region to support a peaceful resolution of the conflict and to avoid any actions which could exacerbate the situation. It condemns all external interference in the Republic of the Congo, including the intervention of foreign forces, in violation of the Charter of the United Nations, and calls for the immediate withdrawal of all foreign forces including mercenaries.

"The Security Council reiterates the importance of a political settlement and national reconciliation and calls upon the parties to cooperate with the International Mediation Committee chaired by the President of Gabon and with the Joint United Nations/Organization of African Unity Special Envoy in reaching rapid agreement on peaceful transitional arrangements leading to the holding of democratic and free and fair elections with the participation of all parties.

"The Security Council remains ready to consider how the United Nations can further contribute to a political settlement, including the possibility of a United Nations presence, on the basis of recommendations to be provided by the Secretary-General as soon as possible."

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For information media. Not an official record.