On 27 July 2018, the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1533 (2004) concerning the Democratic Republic of the Congo held a briefing for Member States on the final report of the Group of Experts on the Democratic Republic of the Congo (S/2018/531). The briefing was held in pursuance of paragraph 31 of resolution 2360 (2017), by which the Security Council encouraged the Chair to hold regular briefings for all interested Member States.
During the briefing, the Coordinator of the Group of Experts provided an overview of the final report’s findings. He noted at the outset that a number of dynamics relating to the activities of armed groups had emerged as a result of lack of implementation of the Comprehensive and Inclusive Political Agreement signed in Kinshasa on 31 December 2016. The Coordinator outlined the continued cross-border transfers of natural resources including gold, as well as weapons and ammunition in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. He also cited ongoing human rights and international humanitarian law violations with a focus on violence against civilians across the country and cases of mass rapes. Finally, the Coordinator highlighted several key recommendations contained in the report, including the need for the Democratic Republic of the Congo to fight against the impunity of security forces involved in natural resources trafficking and collaboration with armed groups.
Following the Coordinator’s briefing, a number of invited regional States — namely, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Burundi, the United Republic of Tanzania and Uganda — made national statements in response to the final report and gave insights into their respective national implementation efforts. The representative of the Democratic Republic of the Congo underlined efforts undertaken by the Ministry of Defense with regards to enhancing data collection of small arms and light weapons stockpiles, as well as safe and secure storage for military equipment. Uganda reaffirmed its support to the Group of Experts and emphasized its readiness to collaborate with the Group on issues relating to the mandate of the Committee.
Committee members encouraged the continued engagement between the Group of Experts and regional States on the final report and the effective implementation of sanctions measures. They stressed the importance of enhanced cooperation between national and international stakeholders to ensure effective implementation of the sanctions measures.