“Belgium does not support any trend in the RDC,” Didier Reynders ensures
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    “Belgium does not support any trend in the RDC,” Didier Reynders ensures

    © Belga
    © Belga

    Belgium does not support any political trend in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Head of Belgian diplomacy Didier Reynders ensured on Monday, in answer to criticism formulated by the Kinshasa regime against the positions defended by Brussels in the face of the political crisis that its former colony is going through. “Belgium will continue speaking to everyone and promoting solutions between Congolese. It is not up to us to make choices. These choices belong to the Congolese themselves, through free and transparent elections. We do not support any political trend. Or we support them all, so that they might compete freely, and that the Congolese might choose their future,” he declared at the inauguration of the new Embassy of Belgium and the Netherlands in Kinshasa. “Na motema naza na bino,” Reynders added in Linguala, which means: “I am wholeheartedly with you.”

    The Belgian Foreign Affairs Minister’s visit in Kinshasa to inaugurate the new embassy had triggered warnings in the press close to the government, who accuses him of playing into the hands of the opposition which demands the resignation of President Joseph Kabila, and who would have preferred the presence of Prime Minister Charles Michel at this ceremony.

    In his speech, Mr. Reynders underlined that this new building —the construction of which began in 2014 and cost 10.5 million euros — is an illustration of the deep relationships between the two countries and between their population. “This building is above all a sign of commitment,” he said. But he did not hide the fact that the bilateral relationships between Brussels and Kinshasa were going through a delicate phase.

    “I am convinced that the current impasse can only be resolved by free and transparent elections,” the Minister said. “The necessary means must be provided, but beyond all, confidence must be restored by a credible electoral timetable and by an electoral process which will allow all to participate in a fair manner, and to express opinions freely. But trust too must be restored between the RDC and its international partners,” he added.

    Maria Novak
    The Brussels Times