The European Union’s Foreign Affairs Council on December 12, 2016 announced targeted sanctions, including travel bans and asset freezes, against seven senior security officials in the Democratic Republic of Congo: Ilunga Kampete, Commander of the Republican Guard; Gabriel Amisi Kumba, Commander for the western region of the Congolese army; John Numbi, former Inspector-General of the Congolese National Police (PNC); Celestin Kanyama, Kinshasa Police Commissioner; Delphin Kahimbi, director of military intelligence; Ferdinand Ilunga Luyolo, Commander of the anti-riot body Légion Nationale d’Intervention of the Congolese National Police; and Roger Kibelisa, Interior Director of the National Intelligence Agency (ANR).
The following quote can be attributed to Ida Sawyer, Central Africa director at Human Rights Watch: “The European Union’s announcement on December 12 of targeted sanctions against seven senior security officials in the Democratic Republic of Congo sends a powerful message that there are consequences for brutal repression. These individuals have played a key role in the violent crackdown on pro-democracy activists, the political opposition, peaceful protesters, and the media over the past two years, as President Joseph Kabila has sought to hold on to power beyond his constitutionally mandated two-term limit, which ends on December 19.
“The EU’s strong action shows grave concern about the direction Congo is heading, and the real risk that the country could descend into large-scale violence in the coming weeks. President Kabila and other senior officials should end repressive measures, including by allowing peaceful protests and ordering security forces not to use excessive force, by releasing political prisoners and dropping unjust charges against political leaders and pro-democracy activists, and by opening barred media outlets. Most critical is that Kabila make a public commitment to respect the constitution and announce he will step down.”