İlknur Şebnem Öztemel – TDO – Etienne Tshisekedi who recently banded the opposition together to end President Joseph Kabila's rule, was died Wednesday. After his death Congo has sink deeper into political crackdown.
Tshisekedi, 84, the first doctor of law and the ally-turned-enemy of despot Mobutu Sese Seko, a rival of the Kabila dynasty, died in Brussels where he went for medical treatment. After his death large crowds gathered around Tshisekedi's home and the headquarters of his UDPS party.
Tshisekedi forced Kabila, who ruled the country since the assassination of his father Laurent at the height of the Second Congo War in 2001, refused to step down on completing his final mandate in December, to a power-sharing deal with the opposition and providing for elections in late 2017.
Belgian Foreign Minister Didier Reynders described Tshisekedi as a "remarkable political figure".
It is expected that elections will be held under strong pressure and in a more jeopardized environment. Thierry Vircoulon, a Paris-based Congo analyst told to AFD that Tshisekedi's death came at the worst time for the establishment of the new transition.