DRC President Kabila agrees to UN Sec. Gen Antonio Guterres

Democratic Republic of Congo President Joseph Kabila has agreed to a request from UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres to visit his country ahead of elections later this year, the UN spokesperson says. Guterres wrote to Kabila to propose a joint visit with African Union chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat following a series of meetings he held on the sidelines of the AU summit in Addis Ababa in late January. There is growing international concern that the DRC could slide into all-out violence as it heads to elections on December 23rd. However, no date has been set for the visit. The elections in the vast mineral-rich African country are expected to pave the way to a historic transfer of power. But Kabila, who took over from his father Laurent after he was assassinated in 2001, has not yet clearly stated whether he will step aside. Anti-government protests have turned deadly over the past months, despite UN appeals to Kabila to rein in his security forces.