Voicing concern over challenges to the implementation of last year’s political agreement in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and deteriorating humanitarian and security situation, the United Nations Security Council has urged all stakeholders to redouble their efforts to resolve the problems faced by the country.

The agreement, popularly referred to as the ’31 December agreement’ represented a significant step towards a peacefully managed transition. However, its implementation has since seen considerable difficulties.

“Effective, swift and timely implementation of the agreement is critical to a credible process and the peace and stability of the DRC, as well as in supporting the legitimacy of the transitional institutions, as it represents a viable road map towards the holding of peaceful and democratic elections,” said members of the Security Council in a statement late yesterday.

Among others, the agreement has stipulated that peaceful, credible, inclusive and timely elections would be organized in DRC no later than December 2017, and would include the participation of all sectors of the society, in particular women.

Also in the statement, the members urged for the swift and inclusive establishment of a government of national unity, the Comité National de Suivi de l’Accord, the adoption of a new electoral law and the full implementation of the confidence building measures in chapter V of the 31 December 2016 agreement, some of which are yet to be implemented.

They also urged all national political stakeholders to overcome their differences, uphold the interests of their people and ensure that they are guided by the rule of law, restraint and the spirit of compromise and dialogue.

In that regard, they called on all political actors, whether in the country or abroad, to desist from any actions that could exacerbate tensions.

Further in the statement, the members of Security Council condemned violence and alleged violations and abuses of human rights in the Kasaï region as well as the deteriorating humanitarian and security situation in the region, which according to reports, has displaced more than one million people within the country and more than 11,000 across its borders.

The members also stressed the need for a swift and full investigation into the killing of the two members of the Group of Experts established pursuant to Security Council resolution 1533 (2004) and underlined the need for full cooperation from the Government.

In this context, they further welcomed the Secretary General’s establishment of a UN Board of Inquiry to investigate the deaths of the two experts and his commitment that the UN will do everything possible to ensure that the perpetrators are brought to justice.