CrisisWatch N°155


01 July 2016

Political manoeuvring over electoral crisis continued as ethnic tensions rose in east. Ruling party Sec Gen 4 June raised possibility of referendum on constitution to extend President Kabila’s rule. Etienne Tshisekedi, leader of opposition Union of Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS), brought together representatives of most opposition parties and civil society near Brussels 8-9 June: participants rejected dialogue as foreseen by Kabila but called for UN, EU, AU, International Organisation of La Francophonie and U.S. to support AU-appointed facilitator Edem Kodjo, established “Rassemblement” follow-up mechanism. Tshisekedi met Kodjo in Brussels 17 June, expressed support for dialogue in spirit of UNSC Resolution 2277. In east, army and UN operations against Rwandan Hutu rebel group Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) stoked tensions between Hutu and other ethnic groups at Buleusa, eastern Walikale; non-Hutu groups suspected Hutu of complicity with FDLR. UN Force Intervention Brigade 16 June reportedly killed seven Mai Mai militants who tried to block food distribution to displaced people in Buleusa camp. U.S. imposed sanctions on Kinshasa police chief Céléstin Kanyama 23 June for “violence against civilians”.