DR Congo

DR Congo security forces used ‘excessive force’ against protesters, UN probe finds

FULL STATEMENT. State agents, such as police and armed forces, used excessive – including lethal – force during demonstrations in Kinshasa last month, when at least 53 people were killed over two days, 143 injured and more than 299 unlawfully arrested, a United Nations preliminary investigation has revealed. The probe, carried out by the Joint Human Rights Office of the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) documented 422 victims of human rights violations, including of the right to life, to physical integrity, to the liberty and security of the person, peaceful assembly and expression. Of the 53 people documented killed, including seven women and two children, at least 48 were killed by State agents, including the National Police (PNC) and soldiers of the Garde Républicaine (GR) and the National armed forces (FARDC). MONUSCO chief Maman Sidikou has raised deep concerns about the widespread impunity that prevails in the country, highlighting the findings of another UN report released today which reveals that a very low number of State agents, especially senior officers, and leaders and combatants of armed groups, are prosecuted and convicted in the DRC for human rights violations. [United Nations News Centre]

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