Mandate of UN peacekeeping force in DR Congo extended for another year
The Security Council today extended the United Nations peacekeeping force in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) for another year, and urged national authorities to reform their security sector and end armed insurgencies and human rights abuses in the country.
Through a unanimously adopted resolution, the 15-member body decided that the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in DRC (MONUSCO) will continue its work until 30 June 2013, focusing on its priority mandate of protecting civilians.
The Mission also supports the Congolese authorities in their stabilization and peace consolidation efforts, including assisting with the holding of elections, the monitoring of human rights violations and support for Government action against armed groups operating in the east of the country.
The eastern provinces of North and South Kivu have witnessed increased fighting between Government troops and renegade fighters who mutinied in April and are now operating as an armed group under the name M23 and led by Bosco Ntaganda. The fighting has displaced more than 100,000 people, including many who have fled to neighbouring Rwanda and Uganda.
The Council condemned the recent mutiny and all outside support to all armed groups and demanded that all forms of support to them cease immediately.
It also demanded that all armed groups “immediately cease all forms of violence and human rights abuses against the civilian population in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in particular against women and children, including rape and other forms of sexual abuse and child recruitment, and demobilize.”
In addition, the Council urged the DRC Government, with support from MONUSCO, to sustain its action against armed groups, restore order and bring the perpetrators to justice, while ensuring the protection of the civilian population, and address the underlying causes of instability.