Kinshasa (Agenzia Fides) - While the mediation of the Catholic Bishops aimed at finding a political solution to the impasse in the Democratic Republic of the Congo continues (see Fides 12/12/2016), the authorities in Kinshasa are preparing for the announced demonstrations by the opposition tied to Etienne Tshisekedi, coinciding with the end of the second and last term of outgoing President Joseph Kabila, at midnight on December 19.
In recent days the suspension of the football league had been decided, to avoid sporting events to be turned into political protests. Now the central government has decreed the filter or the denial of access to social networks from Sunday, 18 December. The ordinance imposes local Internet operators the temporary blocking of any exchange of images, video and voice messages through applications like Facebook, Whatsapp, Twitter, Skype, Google+ and more.
At the same time the authorities of the Province of Eastern Kasai have forced local broadcasters not to transmit programs of political nature.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) issued a warning claiming to fear that the DRC will sink into a spiral of political violence if Kabila does not relinquish power when his term expires. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 16/12/2016)