AFRICA/DR CONGO - Controversy between majority and opposition on the responsibility of the clashes

Friday, 23 September 2016 politics  

Kinshasa (Agenzia Fides) – There is internal and international controversy on the responsibilities of the recent clashes that devastated Kinshasa, capital of Democratic Republic of Congo (see Fides 19-20-21-22/09/2016). The presidential majority of Joseph Kabila accuses "Le Rassemblement", the group of opposition parties that support the candidate Etienne Tshisekedi who organized the protests, of giving life "to an insurrectionary movement" and of having caused the clashes. The government in Kinshasa also rejected accusations of French President François Hollande of being responsible for the violence, as well as the toll of 50 victims of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. The Congolese authorities remain firm on the figure of 32 dead revealed yesterday (see Fides 22/09/2016), while the opposition says that there are a hundred victims.
If calm seems to have returned to the capital, a new front has opened on the funerals of the victims. Tshisekedi's party, the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS), announced a national day of mourning on September 26 with a funeral procession in which Tshisekedi will accompany the victims to the cemetery.
Meanwhile after that of the Catholic Church (see Fides 21/09/2016) even Protestant churches condemn the violence. "The heads of religious denominations condemn the acts of violence that grieve our families and destroy the economic and social fabric of our Country", said a statement by Mgr. Marini Bodo, National President of the Church of Christ in Congo, a union which various Protestant faiths in the Country adhere to. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 23/09/2016)