United States acting Deputy Secretary of State Victoria Nuland visited the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) August 2-3 to meet with senior government leaders to discuss U.S. support for free and fair elections; peace and security in the eastern DRC; humanitarian assistance; economic prosperity; and democratic institutions and governance. During her visit she reaffirmed that the United States and the DRC have a strong and long-standing relationship rooted in shared values and a common interest in supporting sustainable solutions for a greener, more prosperous future. She underscored the U.S. commitment to work together to help realize the DRC’s potential as a climate change solution and as a pillar of stability and economic prosperity in the region.
Under Secretary Nuland made clear that free and fair elections, held peacefully, on time and with inclusive and transparent electoral processes, will strengthen the DRC’s democratic consolidation and meet citizens’ demands for accountable and representative government. She deplored the human toll of the crisis in eastern DRC and condemned the brutal attacks on civilians. She affirmed that the best solution to the crisis in Eastern DRC is diplomatic and expressed appreciation for the engagement of regional leaders through their mediation in the Luanda and Nairobi processes. These efforts have generated a road map for rapid progress towards a diplomatic, lasting solution. She unconditionally condemned hate speech against minority populations including Rwandophones.
Recognizing the urgent protection needs in eastern DRC, acting Deputy Secretary Nuland welcomed all efforts by the DRC government to investigate sexual exploitation and abuse, including conflict-related sexual violence, of some of the most vulnerable people in eastern DRC.
Acting Deputy Secretary Nuland announced an additional $48 million in humanitarian aid to help those most vulnerable to exploitation and abuse. This funding brings total U.S. humanitarian assistance to nearly $486 million this fiscal year. The United States commends and supports the system-wide scale-up of humanitarian assistance in eastern DRC, recognizes Congolese and international partners working in eastern DRC, and encourages others to do more.