Presidential Elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

Press Statement
Mark C. Toner
Deputy Spokesperson, Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
November 9, 2011

The United States government condemns recent calls to violence and other incendiary speech that have recently taken place in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (D.R.C.). The presidential and legislative elections scheduled for November 28 are an important milestone for Congolese democracy and should be a chance for the Congolese people to express their collective will in a peaceful and responsible manner. Irresponsible actions – such as calls to violence and the proclaiming of victory prior to the vote – undermine the electoral process and are inherently undemocratic.

We strongly urge all Congolese political parties, their leaders, and their supporters to act responsibly and to renounce violence, which has no place in a democratic process. We also call on the candidates to pledge to accept the results of a credible process. At the same time, we remind the government of the D.R.C. of its responsibility to provide a secure political space for candidates to conduct their campaigns and for journalists to report on them.

The United States government reiterates its support for its Congolese partners in efforts to conduct transparent, credible, and participatory elections in which the will of the people is expressed peacefully.

PRN: 2011/1907