The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) has urged all political actors in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to exercise restraint as the violence and political impasse gripping the country continues unabated.

In a statement, Council members reiterated that effective, swift and timely implementation of the December 31, 2016, agreement and the recently adopted electoral timeline, are essential for a peaceful and credible electoral process, a democratic transition of power, and the peace and stability of the DRC, as well as in supporting the legitimacy of the transitional institutions.

Council underscored the need “to do everything possible to ensure that the elections on December 23, 2018 are organised with the requisite conditions of transparency, credibility and inclusivity, including the full and equal participation of women at all stages, as well as the importance of youth engagement”.

Further in the statement, the council underscored the need for the government to swiftly and fully investigate the killing of the two members of the Group of Experts and bring those responsible to justice.

Experts Michael Sharp (United States) and Zaida Catalan (Sweden) were abducted in the DRC in early March 2017. Their remains were recovered by peacekeepers from the UN Mission in the country (known by its French acronym, MONUSCO) later in March outside the city of Kananga in the Kasaï-Central province.

The members of the Security Council also expressed concern over the humanitarian situation in the DRC, noting that it had reached “catastrophic levels” in some parts of the DRC, and called on UN Member States to scale up funding to urgently respond to the pressing humanitarian needs in the country.

- African News Agency (ANA)