Kabila supporters to face EU sanctions - sources

2016-12-11 13:06
Joseph Kabila (File: AFP)

Joseph Kabila (File: AFP)

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Brussels - The EU will impose sanctions on seven supporters of Democratic Republic of Congo President Joseph Kabila after a crackdown on protests against his hold on power left more than 50 people dead, EU sources said Friday.

EU foreign ministers warned in October they would act if Kabila showed no sign of stepping down when his term ends on December 19.

One EU diplomatic source said that with the deadline fast approaching, the 28-nation bloc would have little option but to follow through when they met again on Monday since Kabila showed no sign of budging.

"The EU will impose seven new listings" involving travel bans and asset freezes, the source said.

"The EU would regret any compromise which allows Kabila to stay in office," said the source, who asked not to be identified.

Another source said those targeted were likely to be in Kabila's security forces but no names were given.

The EU wants elections and a new government to ensure stability in the DR Congo, a former Belgian colony impoverished and strife-torn but sitting astride Africa's strategic crossroads.

Earlier this week, the Catholic Church launched "reconciliation" talks to end a political stalemate many fear could push the DRC back into civil war.

More than 50 people died in clashes in the capital Kinshasa in September as the opposition accused Kabila of planning to stay in office.

Shortly after, Washington put two Kabila allies - army commander Major General Gabriel Amisi Kumba and former inspector of police General John Numbi - on its sanctions blacklist for undermining democracy.

Kabila first took office in 2001 after the assassination of his father Laurent-Desire Kabila. In 2006 a new constitutional provision limited the presidency to two terms.

The EU has previously imposed sanctions -- trade restrictions, asset freezes and travel bans -- on the DR Congo over rights abuses.

Read more on:    eu  |  joseph kabila  |  drc  |  central africa

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