Monday, August 28, 2006

Fragile Calm in Kinshasa

Another day of calm has passed in Kinshasa but below the surface tensions are still high. Diplomats continue to work to bring Kabila and Bemba together to diffuse the tension. Kabila called for a meeting of the four vice-presidents on Saturday but Bemba did not show. His people said that they were not aware of a meeting. Diplomats see this as a sign that progress is not being made on bringing the two sides to the table to diffuse the tensions diplomatically.

It appears that Kabila does not want to meet with Bemba one-on-one. Bemba said he would meet with Kabila only after certain conditions are met, for example the meeting would have to take place under United Nations supervision. Both sides are holding to their incendiary language and seem to be preparing more for war than a second round of elections, which is scheduled for October 29, 2006.

The Independent Electoral Commission (CEI) began posting the results of the legislative races. The CEI expects to have complete national results posted by September 4th. Almost 10,000 individuals nationwide ran for 500 parliamentary seats. According to the constitution, parliament chooses the Prime Minister.


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