World Bulletin / News Desk
In a statement released ahead of the EU’s Foreign Affairs Council review of the DRC due on Oct. 17, HRW called for “the application of targeted sanctions” to halt rights abuses.
It cited a Sept. 19 demonstration in Kinshasa where over 50 people protesting against President Joseph Kabila’s intended stay in power were killed when police opened fire.
HRW said taking action now would save the situation from deteriorating in the near future.
The group suggested sanctions against senior security force and intelligence officers plus government officials responsible for the violent crackdown. HRW said this would send a strong signal that there are consequences for repressive actions.
“Such actions could also help deter further violence, rein in the most abusive units and commanders and increase pressure on President Kabila to step down peacefully at the end of his mandate and help avoid a broader crisis,'' the HRW statement read.