New Delhi, Aug 11 (IANS) Minister of State for External Affairs M.J. Akbar and Democratic Republic of Congo’s (DRC) Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Raymond Tshibanda N’Tungamulongo held a meeting here on Thursday during which the two sides discussed the entire gamut of various aspects of the bilateral relationship.
“The Foreign Minister of DRC conveyed his government’s deep appreciation for the assistance provided by India to his country in areas of skill development and capacity building,” External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup said during his weekly media briefing here.
“India has funded several projects in DRC through concessional lines of credit amounting to approximately $ 495 million,” he said.
“The projects have been in the diverse areas such as setting up a cement plant, acquisition of buses, rural water supply, hydro-electric power projects and power distribution projects.”
The issue of the Congolese national who was was beaten to death in Delhi in May this year by three youths after an altercation over the hiring of an auto-rickshaw as well as the subsequent reprisals against Indian nationals in Congo also came up for discussion.
Swarup said that N’Tungamulongo “condemned the recent unfortunate incidents”.
“He appreciated the pro-active steps undertaken by the government of India in both the incidents and requested for speedy trial so that justice could be done,” he said.
“He also assured that DRC government will take all necessary measures to provide security to the Indian nationals residing in DRC.”
Akbar informed the visiting minister of the swift action taken by Indian law enforcement agencies to apprehend the culprits involved and “underlined that as people, society and nation, we do not believe in racial discrimination”, the spokesperson said.
According to Swarup, N’Tungamulongo expressed DRC’s support to India’s candidature for a non-permanent seat in the UN Security Council for the 2021-22 term for which elections will be held at the 74th Session of the UN General Assembly in New York in June 2020.
“He said that DRC is aware of India’s immense contribution to UN’s Peacekeeping operations as it itself hosts a strong Indian peacekeeping contingent in DRC,” Swarup said.