UN report points to pre-election rights violations in Congo

AP News
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Posted: Dec 08, 2015 5:00 PM

GENEVA (AP) — A U.N. report has documented hundreds of human rights violations and arbitrary arrests in Congo amid rising tensions ahead of elections scheduled through November 2016.

The United Nations Joint Human Rights Office report Tuesday points to extrajudicial killings, death threats, arbitrary arrests and detention mainly of members of the media, civil society and the political opposition.

U.N. human rights chief Zeid Raad al-Hussein said he would engage Congolese authorities to help ensure free and fair elections through next November. The U.N. office counted over 530 human rights violations around the 2011 election cycle.

Congo hasn't had a peaceful transfer of power in 55 years of independence. President Joseph Kabila is barred by the constitution from seeking a third term but is widely believed to be seeking to prolong his rule.