Enhanced interactive dialogue on - The report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on the Human rights situation and the activities of the United Nations Joint Human Rights Office in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Item 10: - Technical assistance and capacity-building
25 September 2018
Statement by: International Organization for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (EAFORD) and Geneva International Centre for Justice (GICJ)
Thank you Mr. President,
We welcome the annual report by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on the human rights situation and the activities of the UN Joint Human Rights Office in the Democratic Republic of Congo. In particular, we acknowledge the developments highlighted in the report concerning the December 2018 elections.
We also note that the violence perpetrated in the DRC is often a direct response to political clashes and government repression. In actuality, political elections and the process by which former presidents have taken power have always been undemocratic and preceded and followed by violence and other human rights violations. For example, threats and illegal detention of opposition leaders and activists, incidents of trafficking, and other serious human rights violations. These actions severely hinder any chance of fair, democratic, and transparent elections and further limits civil society space. Furthermore, they only add to DRC’s humanitarian situation which has become one of the most expensive and long-lasting humanitarian crises.
It is for the benefit of the DRC population and for the international community to remedy this situation also considering that more than eight countries are involved in DRC’s politics and the formation of several armed forces has further hindered the possibility of a democratic, unified and independent state.
Regarding technical assistance and capacity-building, EAFORD and Geneva International Centre for Justice recommend human rights training for security officials and especially that of riot police for the protection of peaceful assembly and association leading up to, during, and after the 2018 December elections. Additionally, all necessary assistance for all those charged with overseeing the December 2018 elections must be ensured and election funds must be monitored.