The S&D Group welcomes the approval of the new electoral law by the parliament of the Democratic Republic of Congo and calls on all parties to avoid further violence.
S&D Group president Gianni Pittella said today:
"We deplore the recent violence and loss of life in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and we call on all parties to avoid further violence.
"We welcome the important decision taken by the Senate and the National Assembly. We expect President Kabila to sign this legislation and the National Independent Electoral Commission to release a comprehensive electoral calendar without delay."
S&D MEP Kashetu Kyenge, the vice-president of the EU-ACP (Africa/Caribbean/Pacific) Joint Parliamentary Assembly said:
"We continue to be concerned about the political tensions, the arrests and intimidation of political opponents and civil society representatives, as well as the restrictions on fundamental freedoms in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
"Stability in the country can only be achieved through a non-violent, transparent and inclusive process, through free and fair presidential elections in line with the constitution, and with the participation of all democratic forces.
"We also continue to encourage the Congolese authorities and security forces to fully co-operate with MONUC (the United Nations peacekeeping mission in the Congo) in the fight against all armed groups."
President Pittella added:
"I will be leading an S&D delegation to the Democratic Republic of Congo in the coming months in order to visit the regions affected by mining exploitation and to reiterate again our support for 2014 Sakharov Prize laureate Dr Denis Mukwege."