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Main Opposition in DRC to Boycott Elections

The main opposition party in the Democratic Republic of Congo says it will boycott coming presidential and parliamentary elections.

The announcement by the Union for Democracy and Social Progress party (UDPS) came Monday, a day after registration for candidates was closed.

A party spokesman, Jean-Baptiste Bomanza, said it would boycott the vote because basic conditions such as the transparency of elections had not been met.

The elections will give the DRC's 25 million people their first chance in more than 40 years to freely select their own leaders.

The first round of voting was originally set for June 18 but has been pushed back because of organizational delays.

Congo's electoral commission says it has registered more than 70 presidential candidates and some four-thousand candidates for parliament.

Current President Joseph Kabila and at least two former rebel chiefs are among those planning to contest the presidential race.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.