World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


DR Congo Must Account for Election-Related Abuses

UN Urges DR Congo Authorities to Ensure Accountability for Election-Related Abuses

New York, Dec 11 2013 - A new United Nations report stresses the importance of ensuring accountability for human rights violations committed in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) during the 2011 electoral period so as to prevent such crimes from being repeated during the next elections.

The report, produced by the UN Joint Human Rights Office (UNJHRO), calls for measures to be taken to ensure that the local, provincial and national elections – due to take place between 2014 and 2016 – will take place “in an environment conducive to the respect for human rights,” according to a news release.

The UN recalled that the November 2011 elections in the DRC were marked by “a large number of acts of violence” between members of political parties in almost all of the provinces of the vast African nation.

In addition to acts of violence committed by civilians against other civilians, “serious” human rights violations were perpetrated by the defense and security forces, it stated. The UN registered 345 violations committed during the 2011 electoral period, affecting at least 769 victims, including the deaths of at least 41 individuals.

“The defense and security forces were responsible for more than half of the registered violations and the most serious violations were committed in Kinshasa and in Kasai Oriental province,” the Office noted.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay stressed the need to expedite investigations leading to the criminal prosecution of perpetrators suspected of all human rights violations committed in the context of the elections and reiterated the importance of the fight against impunity for the stabilization of the DRC.

“I welcome all measures aimed at ending impunity. Unfortunately, the efforts made by Congolese authorities to address the human rights violations committed during the 2011 electoral period have not yet produced results. Impunity for the perpetrators of these human rights violations prevails even now, two years after the elections were held,” she said.

Ms. Pillay voiced particular concern about violations reportedly committed by security forces against supporters of political parties. “Every threat, every act of violence, every arbitrary arrest of an opponent by the authorities constitutes a serious setback, not only for the protection of human rights in the DRC, but also for reconciliation for Congolese society.”

The report recommends that Congolese authorities carry out independent, credible and impartial investigations into the violations and bring the alleged perpetrators to justice, regardless of their rank or position. It also calls for disciplinary measures against State officials and agents who have abused their privileges for partisan reasons, and for the authorities to firmly condemn incitement to violence and racial hatred.

Martin Kobler, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative and head of the UN peacekeeping mission in DRC (MONUSCO), called on the Congolese Government to take advantage of the recommendations of the report, notably with regard to the next electoral cycle, and to take all necessary preventive measures to ensure the smooth and peaceful holding of the next set of polls.

“We call on the Congolese authorities and their international partners to work towards the effective implementation of the recommendations made in the report, particularly with regard to the fight against impunity, and to provide appropriate support and training to the civil, military and police authorities.”

Established in February 2008, the UNJHRO comprises the Human Rights Division of MONUSCO and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in the DRC.

For more details go to UN News Centre at


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Whaling: Japan’s Institute for Cetacean Research In Defiance Of World Court Ruling

The ICR Today Filed Court Briefs Stating They Intend to Return to Antarctica to Hunt Whales in 2015-2016; Will Seek to Enjoin Other Sea Shepherd Entities from Obstructing Their Operations More>>

Ukraine: UN Urges 'Maximum Restraint' Amid Situation In East Ukraine

Deeply concerned by the deteriorating situation in eastern Ukraine, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called for maximum restraint and appealed to all sides to work towards calming the situation, which has the 'growing potential' to ... More>>

United Nations: Children Can Now Lodge Complaints With The UN

GENEVA (14 April 2014) – United Nations child rights experts have hailed a new treaty that allows children to complain directly to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child about alleged violations of their rights. More>>

India: Election But A Ritual In Nation Lacking Rule Of Law

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) congratulates the people of India for their participation to elect the 16th Lok Sabha. The process has attracted, as usual, considerable media attention across the world. Media claims the process to be 'the largest democratic ... More>>

Solomon Islands: Thousands Remain Affected After Flash Floods

An estimated 52,000 people remain affected in the worst-hit areas of Honiara and greater Guadalcanal following last week’s devastating floods which killed at least 23 people. More>>


World: Some 437,000 People Murdered Worldwide In 2012 - UN

Almost half a million people across the world lost their lives in 2012 as a result of intentional homicide, with the highest murder rates logged in the Americas and Africa, and the lowest in Europe, Asia and Oceania, the United Nations Office on ... More>>

Central African Republic:: Security Council Establishes UN Peacekeeping Mission

Deeply concerned about the deteriorating security situation and ongoing human rights abuses in the Central African Republic (CAR), the Security Council today approved the establishment of a nearly 12,000-strong United Nations peacekeeping operation ... More>>


Parliament: NZ Sending Aid Flight To Solomons

Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully has announced further support for the response to severe flooding in Solomon Islands. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news