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Democratic Republic of the Congo: Investir pour l’équité des enfants en RDC

22 September 2016 - 5:00am
Source: UN Children's Fund Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

par FLAVIEN MULUMBA

Depuis bientôt une décennie, la République démocratique du Congo (RDC) a fait des progrès dans plusieurs domaines dont la santé, l’éducation et la protection de la jeune fille. Au regard de ces avancées, on remarque que tous les enfants n’en profitent pas de la même manière. C’est pour cela qu’il est important de mener une analyse en profondeur de la situation l’équité des enfants en RDC.

Voici quelques graphiques qui dévoilent ces inégalités en fonction du milieu de résidence (urbain ou rural), du genre (féminin ou masculin), de la localisation géographique (en fonction des provinces de la RDC) et du niveau socio-économique des ménages dans lesquels vivent les enfants (du plus pauvre au plus riche). Les indicateurs que nous avons retenus pour faire ressortir le niveau d’équité se regroupent sous plusieurs thématiques: la **mortalité**, la **couverture vaccinale**, la **nutrition**, **l’éducation primaire** et la **protection des adolescentes**.

Santé : taux de mortalité des enfants

Les enfants qui vivent en milieu rural sont défavorisés par rapport à ceux vivant en milieu urbain (118 décès pour mille naissances vivantes contre 96 en 2013-2014).

De 2007 à 2014, la mortalité a baissé, mais il y a encore des écarts énormes entre riches et pauvres.

Les provinces du Nord-Kivu, de Kinshasa et du Bandundu ont de faibles taux de mortalité tandis que les provinces du Sud-Kivu, du Kasaï Occidental et de l’Équateur ont une mortalité très élevée par rapport à la moyenne nationale  (104 décès pour 1000 naissances vivantes).

Santé : vaccination complète des enfants

En 2014, les garçons et les filles avaient les mêmes chances d’accéder à tous les vaccins du PEV (Programme élargi de vaccination). Cependant, les enfants dans les zones rurales étaient défavorisés en terme de vaccination par rapport aux enfants habitant en ville.

Il y a de grandes disparités entre les quintiles : en 2014, les enfants des ménages les plus riches (le quintile le plus élevé) avaient environ deux fois plus de chances que les enfants des ménages les plus pauvres (le quintile le plus bas) d’être vaccinés complètement.  Cet écart a diminué légèrement depuis 2007. Mais l’équité en matière de vaccination est encore loin d’être atteinte.

Il n’y a que dans la province du Nord-Kivu que la couverture vaccinale complète atteint au moins 70%. Les provinces à l’Ouest du pays atteignent une couverture complète entre 40 et 69% chez les enfants de 12-23 mois. Environ la moitié du pays a une couverture complète de moins de 40%.

Nutrition : retard de croissance ou malnutrition chronique

Depuis 2007, le retard de croissance affecte plus les garçons en milieu rural que ceux qui vivent en milieu urbain.

Sur 26 provinces, 21 présentent un taux de malnutrition chronique supérieur à 40%.  Seule la ville de Kinshasa, en vert, aurait moins de 20% d’enfants en retard de croissance.

Éducation : accès à l’école primaire

Entre 2007et 2014, le taux de frequentation scolaire a augmenté aussi bien chez les filles que chez les garçons et en milieu rural comme en milieu urbain.

Lorsque l’on compare les données par quintiles, puis par  niveau d’éducation, primaire et secondaire, on voit que les enfants pauvres qui fréquentent l’école primaire ont moins de chances d’arriver à l’école secondaire. Les enfants issus de familles riches qui fréquentent le primaire ont plus de 2 fois plus de chances de fréquenter l’école secondaire que leurs camarades venant des ménages les plus pauvres.

On remarque que dans les provinces du Katanga,  Kasai  Occidental et Province Orientale, moins de 80% d’enfants fréquentent l’école primaire.

Protection : équité pour les adolescentes en situation de grossesse et de maternité précoce

Les jeunes filles de 15-19 ans vivant en milieu rural sont plus nombreuses à connaître une grossesses ou de maternités précoces que les filles vivant en milieu urbain.

En 2007, il y avait 2 fois plus d’adolescentes mères ou enceintes vivant dans les ménages les plus pauvres (quintile le plus bas) que d’adolescentes mères ou enceintes vivant dans les ménages les plus riches (quintile le plus élevé). En 2014, il y en avait 3 fois plus. Le niveau d’équité a donc baissé.

D’un point de vue géographique, les provinces de Kinshasa, du Nord-Kivu et du Kasai Oriental sont les seules ayant moins de 20% de grossesses et de maternités précoces.

Ce qu’il faut retenir concernant l’équité des enfants en RDC

Voici quelques messages clés qui présentent les progrès et les disparités en matière d’équité :

Des progrès encourageants

  • La **mortalité a baissé** de manière équitable pour les filles et les garçons et selon les  provinces ;
  • La **couverture vaccinale s’est améliorée** en respectant l’équité entre garçons et filles ;
  • Presque autant filles que de garçons fréquentent l’école primaire et le **taux de fréquentation est similaire** dans presque toutes les provinces du pays.

Des disparités à prioriser dans les interventions

  • La **persistance des inégalités entre provinces et entre milieu rural et milieu urbain ** pour toutes les thématiques analysées, excepté la fréquentation de l’école primaire ;
  • Les **enfants de familles pauvres fréquentent faiblement l’école **primaire et ont très peu de chance par rapport aux enfants de familles plus riches d’arriver à l’école secondaire ;
  • Dans tous les domaines, les **enfants issus de familles pauvres sont défavorisés** par rapport aux enfants issus de familles riches ;
  • La **malnutrition chronique** reste un grand problème en RDC et les enfants les plus pauvres sont doublement touchés par rapport aux enfants de parents plus riches ;
  • Les **grossesses et maternités précoces augmentent en milieu rural**. Actuellement, les filles de 15-19 ans vivant dans des ménages pauvres sont environ 3 fois plus affectées que leurs paires vivant dans des ménages plus riches.

Ces points de disparité doivent susciter l’attention de tout le monde dans le but de mettre en œuvre les programmes avec équité.

Les informations utilisées ici proviennent des Enquêtes Démographiques et de Santé (EDS) faites en RDC en 2007 puis en 2013/2014. L’EDS 2013/2014 a été réalisée par la Ministère du Plan et Suivi de la Mise en Oeuvre de la Révolution de la Modernité en collaboration avec le Ministère de la Santé Publique avec l’appui de nombreux partenaires comme l’UNICEF, USAIDPEPFAR, la coopération britannique (DFID), la Banque Mondiale, le Fonds MondialUNFPA et la Fondation Bill et Melinda Gates.

Kenya: Kenya: Refugees and Asylum Seekers in Kenya - Statistical summary as of 31/08/2016

22 September 2016 - 12:46am
Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees Country: Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Guinea, Kenya, Niger, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, Yemen, Zimbabwe

Democratic Republic of the Congo: She never knew about yellow fever until she had to experience it herself

22 September 2016 - 12:21am
Source: International Federation of Red Cross And Red Crescent Societies Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

By Mirabelle Enaka Kima, IFRC

Bioma Julie is a young mother of two, she lives in the Massina I neighbourhood in Kinshasa. She was diagnosed some months back with yellow fever. Today, not only has she regained her health, but she is also well informed about the disease, thanks to the massive information dissemination and sensitization activities conducted by volunteers of the Red Cross of the Democratic Republic of the Congo ( DRC). As part of the preventive immunization campaign launched in the country in August, Red Cross volunteers visited remote communities and went door-to door to raise awareness about yellow fever, encouraged families to get vaccinated, distributed flyers, put up posters and banners with important information about the disease and engaged in dialogues with people through social media channels.

Yellow fever outbreak was declared in DRC in March. The outbreak originated from neighbouring Angola and quickly spread to the DRC, affecting people in six of the country's provinces, including the capital city Kinshasa, where more than 7.7 million people have been vaccinated following the launch of a preventive vaccination campaign. The first round of the vaccination campaign, which started in May until the first week of June, was carried out in the Massina I health zone, where many cases were registered.

"When the vaccination campaign started in May, I was pregnant and could not receive the vaccine. Unfortunately, a few weeks later, I was diagnosed with yellow fever and was taken to the N'dili health centre where I received treatment," said Bioma Julie.

"My unhappy experience was a lesson for the rest of my family on the dangers of the disease, if proper preventive measures are not taken.

When a Red Cross team visited us and provided detailed information and advice on how to protect ourselves from the disease, my whole family decided to go in for the vaccination including my hesitant husband," added Julie

The Red Cross of DRC mobilized 3600 volunteers to increase awareness on yellow fever among vulnerable communities and encourage them to get vaccinated.

"From the onset of the operation, our volunteers were going door-to-door visiting vulnerable families to talk to them about the risks of yellow fever, monitoring and identifying new cases in the communities, as well as explaining how to prevent vector-borne diseases," said Dr Balelia Wema Jean Faustin, health coordinator of the Red Cross of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Violette Lakulu is one of the most experienced Red Cross volunteer In the social mobilization team. She spent hours in the Massina I health zone, where she delivered awareness messages to households, at places of worship and markets.

"It was crucial for us to talk directly with people. We realized that many people did not know what yellow fever was all about. We also identified people with physical disabilities who needed assistance. Depending on the situation, we help to arrange transport for them to get to the vaccination sites or give their home address to the nearest vaccination centre so that they could get vaccinated through a house visit," said Violette.

Outbreak under control

The World Health Organization (WHO) announced recently that the yellow fever outbreak is now under control following the vaccination campaigns in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Angola. In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, no new cases have been recorded since 12 July.

As of 1 September, the number of people vaccinated in Kinshasa province exceeded the targeted number by 102 per cent, across the 32 targeted health zones.

"We are grateful to the Red Cross volunteers who have been able to mobilize 53 per cent of the population of Kinshasa during this reactive vaccination campaign. So far, the positive results are confirming the tremendous work done by Red Cross volunteers," said Dr Viviane Nzeusseu, IFRC health coordinator for Central Africa country cluster support team.

While the yellow fever outbreak is now under control, there are cholera and measles outbreaks in many areas of the country.

As part of the Red Cross response to the ongoing outbreaks, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has launched an emergency appeal for 2.2 million Swiss francs to enable the Red Cross of DRC to deliver emergency health support, provide safe water, adequate sanitation and promote safe hygiene practices.

With technical support and coordination with other partners National Societies provided by the IFRC Central Africa office, the DRC Red Cross is preparing for the upcoming cholera and measles vaccination campaigns, which will be launched at the end of September, despite the recent civil unrest in Kinshasa.

The appeal is currently 55 per cent funded. "Funding gap remains a major concern as the country goes through a re-emergence of cholera, which has a high case fatality rate, in endemic and epidemic areas," said Dr Viviane Nzeusseu.

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Déclaration à la presse faite par le Conseil de sécurité concernant la situation en République démocratique du Congo

21 September 2016 - 7:53pm
Source: UN Security Council Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

SC/12528-AFR/3451

On trouvera ci-après le texte de la déclaration à la presse faite, aujourd’hui, par le Président du Conseil de sécurité pour le mois de septembre, M. Gerard van Bohemen (Nouvelle-Zélande):

Les membres du Conseil de sécurité se sont dits vivement préoccupés par les affrontements violents qui ont opposé manifestants et forces de sécurité à Kinshasa et en plusieurs autres lieux de la République démocratique du Congo les 19 et 20 septembre. Ils ont condamné fermement la violence qui a déjà causé la mort de 32 personnes au moins, dont 4 policiers dans la capitale. Ils ont déploré les pertes de vies humaines et demandé que les personnes responsables aient à répondre de leurs actes.

Les membres du Conseil ont demandé à tous les partis politiques, à leurs partisans et aux autres acteurs politiques de s’abstenir de toute autre violence ou provocation et de régler leurs différends de manière pacifique. Ils ont demandé instamment à toutes les parties de garder leur calme et prié les autorités congolaises de faire preuve de la plus grande retenue possible face aux manifestations. Ils ont en outre demandé aux autorités de respecter les droits de l’homme et libertés fondamentales, en particulier le droit de réunion pacifique. Ils ont aussi demandé à tous les dirigeants politiques concernés et à leurs partisans de s’abstenir de tout autre acte susceptible d’exacerber la situation et d’accroître les tensions. Ils ont demandé au Gouvernement de la République démocratique du Congo de traduire en justice les personnes responsables de violations des droits de l’homme et d’atteintes à ces droits.

Rappelant la résolution 2277 (2016) du Conseil, les membres du Conseil ont souligné qu’il importait au plus haut point de tenir sans tarder une élection présidentielle pacifique, crédible, ouverte et transparente, conformément à la Constitution, pour assurer la stabilité, le développement et la consolidation de la démocratie constitutionnelle en République démocratique du Congo. Ils ont à nouveau demandé à toutes les parties prenantes de mener un dialogue politique ouvert, inclusif et pacifique sur la tenue d’une élection présidentielle, conformément à la Constitution, et ont exprimé leur soutien à l’action que mène l’Union africaine, facilitateur du dialogue. Ils ont demandé instamment à tous les acteurs politiques de faire preuve de responsabilité en s’engageant à mener à bien le dialogue, et à toutes les parties prenantes de faire en sorte que le processus soit inclusif.

Les membres du Conseil ont exprimé leur volonté de continuer à suivre de près la situation en République démocratique du Congo, en particulier les conditions de sécurité sur le terrain et les efforts consentis pour mener à bien le processus électoral.

Les membres du Conseil ont réitéré leur plein appui à la MONUSCO et au Représentant spécial du Secrétaire général en République démocratique du Congo.

À l’intention des organes d’information • Document non officiel.

Democratic Republic of the Congo: RDC: le Conseil de sécurité de l'ONU souligne l'"importance" de l'élection

21 September 2016 - 7:53pm
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Nations unies, Etats-Unis | AFP | mercredi 21/09/2016 - 22:04 GMT

Le Conseil de sécurité de l'ONU a lancé mercredi un appel au calme en République démocratique du Congo (RDC) et insisté sur "l'importance cruciale" de la tenue d'une élection présidentielle "dans le respect de la constitution".

Les membres du Conseil de sécurité "condamnent fortement la violence qui a déjà conduit à la mort d'au moins 32 personnes, dont quatre policiers", lundi et mardi à Kinshasa, selon la déclaration.

Ils appellent "toutes les parties à éviter de futures violences et provocations et à régler pacifiquement leurs différends". "Ils appellent les autorités à respecter les droits de l'homme et les libertés fondamentales, particulièrement la liberté de rassemblement".

Le Conseil de sécurité a insisté sur "l'importance cruciale de la tenue d'une élection présidentielle pacifique, crédible, transparente, dans les délais opportuns et dans le respect de la constitution".

Kinshasa a été secouée lundi et mardi par des violences qui ont fait entre une trentaine et une centaine de morts selon les protagonistes. Les troubles ont opposé les forces de sécurité à l'opposition qui exige le départ du président Joseph Kabila à la fin de son mandat prévue à la fin de l'année.

La Constitution interdit à M. Kabila, au pouvoir depuis 2001, de se représenter, mais le chef de l'Etat ne semble pas vouloir quitter son poste alors que le scrutin présidentiel apparaît désormais impossible à organiser dans les temps.

cf/avz/sha

© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Security Council Press Statement on Situation in Democratic Republic of Congo ( 21 September 2016)

21 September 2016 - 7:44pm
Source: UN Security Council Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

SC/12528-AFR/3451

The following Security Council press statement was issued today by Council President Gerard van Bohemen (New Zealand):

The members of the Security Council expressed their deep concerns about the violent clashes between protestors and security forces that took place in Kinshasa and several other locations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo on 19 and 20 September. They strongly condemned the violence, which has already led to the death of at least 32 people, including four police officers in the capital. They expressed their regrets for the loss of lives and requested that those responsible be held accountable.

They called upon all political parties, their supporters, and other political actors to refrain from further violence or other provocations and to address their differences peacefully. They urged all parties to remain calm and called on the Congolese authorities to exercise maximum restraint in their response to protests. They further called on the authorities to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms, especially the right of peaceful assembly. They also called on all concerned political leaders and their supporters to desist from undertaking any further acts that could continue to exacerbate the situation and heighten tensions. They called on the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo to hold accountable those responsible for violations and abuses of human rights.

Recalling Security Council resolution 2277 (2016), the members of the Security Council stressed the crucial importance of peaceful, credible, inclusive, transparent and timely presidential elections, in accordance with the Constitution, for the stability, development, and consolidation of constitutional democracy in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. They reiterated their call upon all stakeholders to engage into an open, inclusive and peaceful political dialogue over the holding of presidential elections, in accordance with the Constitution, and expressed their support for the efforts of the African Union as facilitator of the dialogue. They urged all political parties to show responsibility by committing to the conclusion of the dialogue and called upon all involved to ensure inclusivity of the process.

The members of the Security Council expressed their determination to continue to closely follow the situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in particular the security conditions on the ground and the efforts to successfully conclude the electoral process.

The members of the Security Council reiterated their full support to the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) and the Special Representative of the Secretary-General in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

For information media. Not an official record.

Democratic Republic of the Congo: UN Security Council calls for calm, elections in DRC

21 September 2016 - 7:44pm
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

New York, United States | AFP | Wednesday 9/21/2016 - 22:19 GMT

The UN Security Council called for calm in Kinshasa on Wednesday after two days of violence killed at least 32 people, and pressed for credible elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

"They expressed their regrets for the loss of lives and requested that those responsible be held accountable," the members said in a statement released on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly.

The violence saw people burned alive and attacks on police positions in the worst unrest in the capital since January 2015.

The Security Council called for calm and urged Congolese authorities to exercise "maximum restraint."

Congolese President Joseph Kabila was due to address the General Assembly on Thursday.

"The members of the Security Council stressed the crucial importance of peaceful, credible, inclusive, transparent and timely presidential elections, in accordance with the Constitution," the statement said.

"They urged all political parties to show responsibility by committing to the conclusion of the dialogue and called upon all involved to ensure inclusivity of the process," it added.

The Congolese opposition said more than 100 people were killed. Police said 32 people died during clashes in the capital Monday and Tuesday.

jm/cml/mdl

© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Companies pledge to help reduce childbirth deaths in crisis settings

21 September 2016 - 4:39pm
Source: UN Population Fund Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Women do not stop giving birth when disaster strikes. Every day, about 500 women die of childbirth-related causes in humanitarian emergencies or fragile settings.

Yet women’s reproductive health needs are not considered priorities in humanitarian response.

To change this, representatives of Bayer, Benetton, General Electric, and Johnson & Johnson, and advocacy organization Zonta International met yesterday with United Nations and foreign affairs officials at UN Headquarters in New York to pledge their support for the Safe Birth Even Here campaign.

The campaign aims increase access to reproductive health care in crisis-affected areas.

“When we hear that women are giving birth in the desert between Syria and Jordan, that women are giving birth in an underpass while waiting for a train in Budapest … we have to look at what we are partnering to do,” said Joy Marini, executive director of maternal and child health at Johnson & Johnson.

Hope, then heartbreak

Four years ago, Sarah Nyirangirimana was thrilled to be pregnant. She had struggled to conceive after her first child was born 11 years before.

“I was the happiest woman on earth and was looking forward to giving birth to that child I considered a gift from God,” she recently told UNFPA.

But Ms. Nyirangirimana lives in the North Kivu Province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where a brutal conflict was raging, keeping her from reaching health care.

“Roads were blocked or unsafe, and it was difficult to move,” she said. “Us women were bearing the brunt of the violence, with rape, abduction, shooting and looting throughout the area.”

Her town in the mountainous territory of Rutshuru was at one point seized by rebel fighters. People were afraid to leave their homes.

Under these conditions, Ms. Nyirangirimana went into labour.

She was in agony for hours. “It was painful. Only family members who did not have any medical background attended to me,” she recalled.

There was no way to know that she was experiencing dangerous childbirth complications – until she gave birth to a stillborn baby boy.

And her ordeal was not over.

Ms. Nyirangirimana suffered serious injuries from childbirth. After stability returned to her region, UNFPA helped her receive surgery, but she has still not been able to fully recover.

Companies pledge to boost crisis care

UNFPA and its partners are working to ensure women like Ms. Nyirangirimana have access to reproductive health care, even in emergencies.

This means not only maternal health care, but the full range of health services needed to protect women’s health and rights. This includes access to family planning, sexual health information, and gender-based violence prevention and responses.

“We must recognize that for a woman who is about to give birth, or for the adolescent girl who survived sexual violence, these life-saving services are as vital as water, food and shelter,” said UNFPA Patron Princess Mary of Denmark at the UN meeting.

“It is not a luxury,” said David Nabarro, the Special Adviser on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. “It is essential.”

The companies' representatives highlighted the importance of using their strengths and resources – such as technologies, supply chains and awareness-raising abilities – to support these efforts.

“The private sector has a huge role to play in leveraging cutting-edge innovation and resources,” said Jeanette Fielding, Bayer’s global policy head.

Chiara Mio, president of the Benetton Group’s sustainability committee, added, “We don’t want to be limited to donating t-shirts when there is an emergency.”

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Violences à Kinshasa : 32 morts lundi et mardi (police nationale)

21 September 2016 - 4:01pm
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Kinshasa, RD Congo | AFP | mercredi 21/09/2016 - 15:38 GMT

Trente-deux personnes ont été tuées lundi et mardi dans les violences entre manifestants, jeunes et forces de l'ordre ayant éclaté à Kinshasa en marge d'une manifestation d'opposition avant de dégénérer en émeutes, selon un bilan provisoire communiqué mercredi par la police.

"Depuis le 19 jusqu’au 20 septembre 2016, cela se chiffre désormais provisoirement à 32 tués", a déclaré à la presse le colonel Pierre-Rombaut Mwana-Mputu, porte-parole de la police nationale de la République démocratique du Congo.

Un commissariat et douze sous-commissariats ont été pillés et incendiés mardi, a ajouté l'officier, qui a qualifié à plusieurs reprises d'"insurgés" les civils ayant commis des violences.

"La police nationale a été appuyée par des éléments des FARDC" (l'armée) "pour arrêter les actes de pillages et de vandalisme", a déclaré le colonel Mwana-Mputu, affirmant que les forces de l'ordre avaient dû faire face à plusieurs reprises à des émeutiers armés de kalachnikov (fusils d'assaut utilisés par l'armée et la police).

"Les services de l’ordre demandent à la population de dénoncer toutes les personnes détentrices [...] des armes emportées lors du saccage de commissariats et sous-commissariats de police et autres équipements et effets militaires", a-t-il ajouté.

str-mj/jh

© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse

Democratic Republic of the Congo: RDC : apaisement à Kinshasa après deux jours de violences meurtrières

21 September 2016 - 4:00pm
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Kinshasa, RD Congo | AFP | mercredi 21/09/2016 - 20:23 GMT

par Marthe BOSUANDOLE

La vie a repris un cours presque normal mercredi à Kinshasa après deux journées de troubles ayant fait entre une trentaine et une centaine de morts, selon les bilans des protagonistes.

La police nationale a fourni un bilan global provisoire de 32 morts, civils ou membres des forces de l'ordre tués, pour beaucoup par balles, en 48 heures de pillages et d'affrontements entre forces de l'ordre et jeunes réclamant le départ du président Joseph Kabila.

Mais pour l'Union pour la démocratie et le progrès social (UDPS), parti d'opposition historique en République démocratique du Congo, ces violences, les pires qu'ait connues Kinshasa depuis janvier 2015, ont fait "plus de 100 morts".

Les affrontements ont éclaté lundi matin en marge d'une manifestation organisée par un "Rassemblement" d'opposition constitué autour de l'UDPS à trois mois de la fin du mandat de M. Kabila pour lui signifier son "préavis" et exiger son départ le 20 décembre.

La Constitution interdit à M. Kabila, au pouvoir depuis 2001, de se représenter, mais le chef de l’État ne donne aucun signe de vouloir quitter son poste alors que le scrutin présidentiel apparaît désormais impossible à organiser dans les temps.

La situation a rapidement dégénéré pour tourner à l'émeute et au pillage de bâtiments publics (commissariats, tribunaux...) ou de biens privés.

Les autorités et le "Rassemblement" se sont mutuellement renvoyé la responsabilité des violences. Dans un communiqué, la présidence de la République a accusé mercredi l'opposition d'avoir transformé la manifestation en "émeutes sanglantes".

Bruno Tshibala, porte-parole de l'UDPS, a qualifié les troubles d'"incendie [...] planifié" par un "pouvoir sanguinaire".

L'ONU, qui déploie en RDC sa plus grosse force de maintien de la paix au monde (principalement présente dans l'est du pays) s'est montrée prudente avec les chiffres.

"Il y a beaucoup de personnes qui ont été tuées", a déclaré à la presse le chef du Bureau conjoint des Nations unies pour les droits de l'Homme en RDC (BCNUDH), José-Maria Aranaz, indiquant que son organisme ne donnerait un bilan qu'après un long travail de vérification.

  • 'Morgue débordée' -

Dans la capitale, la vie a commencé à reprendre ses droits mercredi. Les transports en commun ont fonctionné de nouveau, mais la circulation s'est révélée plus fluide qu'un jour normal dans cette mégapole pauvre de 10 millions d'habitants habituée aux embouteillages.

Les pompes à essence et les boutiques ont majoritairement rouvert. Les parents ont cependant préféré ne pas envoyer leurs enfants à l'école pour le troisième jour consécutif alors que l’on pouvait voir encore une présence inhabituelle de militaires en ville.

A la morgue de l'hôpital général, dans le nord de la capitale, un agent de police gardant les lieux a déclaré à l'AFP : "Il y a eu des corps ramenés ici après que la morgue du camp [militaire le plus proche] a été débordée." Pressé de donner des précisions, l'homme a simplement déclaré : "Beaucoup de gens sont morts, plusieurs corps sont gardés ici."

Dénonçant une "brutalité excessive" tant de la part des manifestants ou des émeutiers (accusés par la police d'avoir utilisé des armes automatiques) que des forces de l'ordre, M. Aranaz, du BCNUDH, a dit être "très (préoccupé) par l'usage massif des armes létales dans le contrôle des manifestations".

Dans les quartiers sud de la capitale durement touchés par les violences, plusieurs habitants ont expliqué les débordements des jours précédents par l'exaspération d'une population excédée par une situation de misère quasi généralisée et sa volonté d'alternance politique à la tête de l’État.

Dans son communiqué - lu mercredi soir à la télévision publique -, la présidence de la république n'a fait aucune référence à l'avenir politique du chef de l’État, "qui présente ses vives condoléances à toutes les familles éprouvées".

Sans faire aucune référence au scrutin présidentiel, le texte ajoute que M. Kabila appelle l'opposition à délaisser "l'insurrection" et à "le rejoindre sans attendre" à la table du "dialogue présentement en cours pour régler les difficultés nées de l'organisation de nouveaux scrutins prévus par la Constitution" (les élections locales, NDLR).

Ce "dialogue national" s'est ouvert le 1er septembre entre la majorité au pouvoir, des représentants de la société civile et une frange minoritaire de l'opposition pour tenter d'esquisser un voie de sortie à la crise politique qui consume le pays depuis la réélection contestée de M. Kabila en 2011.

Suspendus mardis, ses travaux doivent reprendre vendredi.

Respectée au Congo pour le rôle déterminant qu'elle a jouée dans l'ouverture démocratique de la décennie 1990, l’Église catholique, qui participe au "dialogue" a demandé mardi du temps pour "rechercher un consensus plus large" et dans lequel il devra selon elle "être clairement établi et stipulé que" M. Kabila ne se représentera pas.

mbb-mj/jh

© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Over 100 killed in Kinshasa two-day violence: DR Congo opposition

21 September 2016 - 3:31pm
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Kinshasa, DR Congo | AFP | Wednesday 9/21/2016 - 19:38 GMT

Two days of violence in Kinshasa left over 100 people dead, the Democratic Republic of Congo opposition said Wednesday, their figure more than tripling the police toll.

Police in DR Congo said earlier that 32 people had been killed during the clashes in the capital on Monday and Tuesday, as security forces brought a wave of violence and looting to an end.

mbb-mj/pvh/har

© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse

Democratic Republic of the Congo: DRC: Authorities must not fan the flames of unrest with violence

21 September 2016 - 2:08pm
Source: Amnesty International Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

The authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) must show restraint in their handling of protests to ensure that they do not inflame tensions in the country, and conduct thorough, prompt, impartial and transparent investigations into killings and violence that took place at opposition rallies in Kinshasa yesterday, Amnesty International said today.

The government has said 17 people, including three police officers, were killed at rallies held to demand that the electoral commission announce the date of the next presidential election, while the opposition parties put the death toll at more than 50 protesters. Credible civil society reports mention 25 deaths, including the three police officers.

“Confronting people exercising their rights to freedom of expression, association and assembly with excessive force fans the flames of unrest. The DRC authorities must take immediate steps to halt this escalating tension, and all parties must refrain from violence.”

Fourteen people also suffered bullet wounds during the protests, and fires broke out at the offices of three opposition political parties in Kinshasa this morning.

Amnesty International warned in its latest report on the DRC that the authorities’ mounting crackdown on the right to freedom of expression could trigger violence in an already tense political climate.

Background

Yesterday was the constitutional deadline for the Independent National Electoral Commission (CENI) to announce the date for presidential elections.

The opposition parties want elections to be held so that President Joseph Kabila can be replaced when his second term ends on 19 December, but the electoral commission has failed to call the election, citing lack of funds and insufficient time to update the voting register.

The constitutional court ruled in May that the incumbent can legally remain in office until his successor is in place, a ruling the opposition rejects.

A process called by the government to resolve the impasse, known as the National Dialogue, has been rejected by opposition groups who say it is a ploy to extend Kabila’s stay in power

South Sudan: South Sudan Country Profile, Updated August 2016

21 September 2016 - 12:45pm
Source: Danish Refugee Council, Regional Mixed Migration Secretariat Country: Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, South Sudan, Sudan

Key mixed migration characteristics

  • South Sudan is a major refugee producing country and ranks among the countries with the highest levels of conflict-induced population displacement globally.

  • UNHCR estimates that nearly one in four South Sudanese citizens are displaced within its borders or to neighbouring countries

  • More than 930,000 South Sudanese are displaced in neighbouring countries (both pre and post December 2013), with the majority being hosted in Uganda (299,238) followed by Ethiopia (280,221), Sudan (246,809), Kenya (88,032), Democratic Republic of Congo (15,103), and Central Africa Republic (4,103) as of 7 August 2016.

  • More than 1.61 million South Sudanese were displaced in various parts of the country as of 31 July 2016, of which 170,000 were sheltered in UN Protection of Civilians sites.

  • South Sudan is also destination country for migrants, asylum seeker and refugees from neighbouring countries despite frequent conflict and instability that is affecting the country.

  • There were a total of 259,796 refugees and asylum seekers in South Sudan as of July 2016 with the majority of refugees coming from Sudan and lesser numbers from Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia and Central African Republic.

  • The US Department of State’s 2016 Trafficking in Persons report places South Sudan on Tier 3. According to the report, South Sudan is a source and destination country for men, women and children subjected to forced labour and sex trafficking

As a mixed migration origin country

South Sudan is predominantly a country of origin for refugees and asylum seekers who seek refuge in neighbouring countries in Ethiopia, Sudan, Uganda and Kenya. The Republic of South Sudan, the world’s newest nation, gained independence from Sudan on July 09, 2011, after a referendum held in January 2011 in which the majority voted in favour of secession. Prior to this, Sudan experienced long civil conflict and war from 1955 to 2005, between the Arab Khartoum government and southern Sudan in which more than 2.5 million people lost their lives, mostly civilians, due to starvation and hunger

As a new nation, South Sudan faces the dual challenge of dealing with the legacy of more than 50 years of conflict and continued instability and fighting. In December 15, 2013, a power struggle between President Salva Kiir and his deputy Riek Machar took place. The independence political party, Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), divided into two main factions and conflict broke out between government and opposition forces. The conflict led to a humanitarian crisis in the country including loss of lives and displacement of more than 2.2 million people. An internationally mediated peace agreement was signed in August 2015, based on a power-sharing principle and in April 2016, the leader of the SPLM opposition faction, Riek Machar, returned to Juba to form a transitional government of national unity and was sworn in as the first Vice- President with Salva Kiir as the president However on the eve of South Sudan’s fifth anniversary of independence on July 08, 2016, heavy fighting erupted in the capital Juba between the two SPLM factions resulting in loss of lives and further displacement of people.

According to the UNHCR, about 4,000 South Sudanese refugees and asylum seekers were recorded entering Uganda on a daily basis immediately after conflict erupted in Juba and nearly 54,000 fled to Uganda in July 2016 , a higher figure than total arrivals reported in the first six months of 2016 (or 33,838)

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Note pour les médias N° 030-070-016 - Cas suspects de choléra dans le Nord-Ubangi: Duguru, l’un des villages le plus touché va être doté par l’OMS d’un réseau de radiocommunications HF pour une meilleure transmission des

21 September 2016 - 12:27pm
Source: World Health Organization Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

BILI / DUGURU (Nord-Ubangi), 21 septembre 2016. En vue de renforcer la prévention et de contribuer au contrôle rapide de la suspicion du choléra touchant une dizaine d’aires de santé de la zone de santé de Bili (168 km de Gbadolite, Chef-lieu provincial du Nord-Ubangi) depuis la 22ème semaine épidémiologique, une équipe avancée de l’OMS s’est déployée, du 9 au 16 septembre 2016 dans la zone affectée. L’équipe était dirigée par le chargé de la sécurité de la région africaine de l’OMS, M. Abdoulaye Doumbia, et comprenait d’autres professionnels du Bureau Pays de l’OMS tels que le chargé de la communication ainsi que le chargé des technologies de l’information et de la communication.

L’objectif était avant tout d’évaluer les conditions sécuritaires à Duguru - l’une des aires de santé la plus touchée par les cas suspects de choléra située à 45 km de Bili-Centre - avant le déploiement dans les tout prochains jours des équipes d’intervention sanitaire sur la zone et d’y renforcer le système de transfert des données épidémiologiques collectées par un réseau de radiocommunications HF et d’alimentation en énergie électrique. Ce système offre l’avantage de s’affranchir de toute dépendance vis-à-vis des fournisseurs de radios privées et de transmettre lesdites données en temps réel dans le cadre de la riposte.

“Une présence efficace de l’OMS sur le terrain et l’appui tant technique que logistique qu’elle peut nous apporter ici chez nous vont beaucoup nous réconforter, car depuis la survenue de ce phénomène dans plusieurs aires de santé de Bili, il nous était fort difficile de savoir avec exactitude de quoi il s’agissait”, a indiqué M. Jean-Bosco Bosomi Mopkami, Vice-Gouverneur du Nord-Ubangi.

De la 22ème semaine jusqu’à la 37ème épidémiologique, les aires de santé de de Bili, (plus particulièrement celles de Baya, Boduna, Boroto, Duguru, Gbagayambo, Gboko, Sidi et Pandu etc.) ont notifié un total cumulé de 419 cas suspects avec 50 décès (taux de létalité: 11,93%) dus aux diarrhées aqueuses aiguës accompagnées des vomissements. Selon la Division Provinciale de la Santé (DPS) du Nord-Ubangi, de ces cas mortels, 22 ont été enregistrés dans la communauté contre une vingtaine d’autres dans les différents centres de santé de cette province qui partage la frontière nord avec la République Centrafricaine (RCA).

L’équipe de professionnels de l’OMS, en étroite collaboration avec ses partenaires locaux de la DPS/Nord-Ubangi s’est rendue à Duguru le lundi 12 septembre en vue de rassembler des informations de première main sur la viabilité du site avant l’installation des équipements susmentionnés. Des rencontres ont eu lieu avec l’Infirmier titulaire du Centre de santé rural ainsi qu’avec le chef du village, entouré d’une dizaine d’habitants de Duguru.

“La situation sanitaire actuelle demeure toujours préoccupante dans notre localité en dépit de la baisse des cas suspects de diarrhée cholériforme”, a souligné M. Jean Thomas Asianga, Infirmier titulaire du Centre de santé de Duguru. Son aire de santé avait enregistré 52 cas suspects avec 4 décès (tous décédés dans la communauté), contre 320 cas suspects avec 18 décès notifiés par Sidi, l’autre aire de santé voisine de Duguru et située à quelques encablures de la rivière Ubangi. L’Infirmier note qu’il manque cruellement des sources d’eau correctement aménagées dans les localités susmentionnées ainsi que des latrines. “La population continue à déféquer à l’air libre, et cela peut favoriser la propagation de la maladie”, s’inquiète-t-il.

“Quand les gens sont morts de cette maladie [diarrhée cholériforme] dans notre village, cela nous a beaucoup affligés. Notre milieu est très défavorisé, c’est pour cela que nous avons besoin de l’aide dans l’immédiat pour être bien soigné,” a dit pour sa part M. Sawa Yangamoto, chef du village de Duguru. ‘‘Comme nous n’avions pas des purifiants tels que les Aquatabs, nous avons tenu à sensibiliser nos populations à bouillir l’eau de la source avant de la consommer’’, ajoute-t-il.

Des Infirmiers titulaires et leurs adjoints ainsi que des relais communautaires sont mobilisés pour aller sur plusieurs axes, dans les villages éloignés, pour sensibiliser la population

La DPS du Nord-Ubangi - avec l’appui technique et financier de l’OMS et de la Direction de Lutte contre la Maladie (DLM) - a formé en cascade plus de 270 personnels comprenant 17 Infirmiers titulaires (IT), une cinquantaine d’Infirmiers titulaires adjoints (ITA) et près de 200 relais communautaires (RECO) de la zone de santé de Bili. ‘‘Nous formons par vague d’une cinquantaine pour renforcer les capacités d’un grand nombre de personnes en peu de temps, avant leur déploiement sur le terrain pour le grand travail de sensibilisation des communautés dans les zones touchées par les cas suspects de choléra’’, a souligné le Dr Aline Kulele, chargée de l’information sanitaire et de la communication à la DPS/ Nord-Ubangi.

La formation a été assurée pendant 4 jours (du 12 au 15 septembre) à Bili-Centre. Les membres de l’équipe conjointe DLM (venue de Kinshasa) et de la DPS (partie de Gbadolite) avaient auparavant procédé à une enquête dans les ménages et dans les dix-sept structures des aires de santé de Bili. ‘‘Le but de cette enquête ménages était de savoir si les populations locales et les prestataires de santé étaient au courant de la flambée en cours dans la région et d’identifier les facteurs de risque pouvant favoriser l’aggravation de la situation,’’ a ajouté le Dr Kulele.

A l’issue de la visite des experts de l’OMS sur la zone et en complémentarité des résultats de l’enquête ménages réalisée sur les pratiques et les habitudes des populations concernées, les besoins urgents identifiés pour permettre de lutter efficacement contre la flambée des cas suspects du choléra dans la zone de santé de Bili se résument de la manière ci-dessous :

  • Rendre disponibles les dispositifs de lavage des mains dans les structures sanitaires identifiées;

  • Multiplier les points de chloration de l’eau et aménager correctement les sources d’eau ;

  • Construire dans l’immédiat des latrines publiques dans lesdites structures en respectant les normes environnementales ou encore d’assainissement écologique ;

  • Renforcer la sensibilisation dans les ménages et les communautés sur les mesures d’hygiène individuelle et collective (production des supports de sensibilisation : affiches, dépliants, mégaphones et piles pour les crieurs etc.)

  • Installer dans un bref délai les réseaux de radiocommunications HF à Duguru, aire de santé donnant accès à une dizaine d’autres longeant la rivière Ubangi qui sépare la RDC de la République Centrafricaine (RCA) afin de permettre une transmission en temps réel des données épidémiologiques de la zone de santé de Bili ;

  • Redynamiser la surveillance intégrée des maladies, la préparation et la réponse etc.

Le comblement de ces lacunes permettra de mieux préparer la réponse dans cette région qui en est à première expérience d’une grosse suspicion du choléra et d'estimer l'impact des actions à mettre en place en vue de réduire la morbidité et le taux élevé des décès dans la communauté.

Relations médias:

Eugene Kabambi | Chargé de Communications | Direct: +243 81 715 1697 | Office : +47 241 39 027 | Email: kabambie@who.int

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Democratic Republic of Congo: Emergency Dashboard, September 2016

21 September 2016 - 12:16pm
Source: World Food Programme Country: Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, South Sudan, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania

Democratic Republic of the Congo: DR Congo unrest ends with official death toll at 32

21 September 2016 - 12:05pm
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Kinshasa, DR Congo | AFP | Thursday 9/22/2016 - 03:03 GMT

by Marc JOURDIER

Police in DR Congo said Wednesday that 32 people had been killed during two days of clashes in the capital Kinshasa this week, while the opposition said more than three times that number had died.

The wildly divergent figures were released as security forces brought the wave of violence and looting to an end.

Clashes between police and opponents of President Joseph Kabila on Monday and Tuesday saw people burned alive, and attacks on police positions, but the worst unrest in the capital since January 2015 appeared to have fizzled out on Wednesday.

"The national police was backed by members of the (army) to stop the acts of looting and vandalism," police spokesman Pierre-Rombaut Mwana-Mputu told reporters.

Traffic in the capital was lighter than usual on Wednesday and many schoolchildren remained at home. But residents were back on the streets, some inspecting shops and other buildings that were pillaged or gutted by fires.

The official death toll is far below the figure of over 100 given by the opposition, but broadly in line with the number given by Human Rights Watch, which put the toll at 37.

The UN, which has deployed its biggest peacekeeping force in DR Congo, mostly in the troubled east, was cautious about the figures.

"There are many people who were killed," Jose Maria Aranaz, who heads the United Nations Joint Human Rights Office (UNJHRO), told reporters, indicating that his organisation would give a toll after a long audit.

The UN Security Council Wednesday called for calm and pressed for "credible elections" to be held.

Opposition groups had organised demonstrations on Monday to demand the resignation of Kabila, who has ruled since 2001 and, under the constitution, should step down on December 20.

Both sides traded blame for the violence that erupted.

In a statement, the presidency accused the opposition of having transformed the event into "bloody riots" while a spokesman for the Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS), Bruno Tshibala, described the unrest as a "fire" planned by a "bloodthirsty power".

Kabila is yet to call elections, fanning fears he plans to stay in power despite pressure to step aside from his domestic political opponents, as well as the United Nations and Western powers.

- 'Anger made people loot' -

As shops and petrol stations reopened for business on Wednesday, there was anger as well as relief that the violence appeared to have ended -- even if the underlying political tensions remain.

"What happened yesterday and the day before was awful," said Christian, 21, speaking outside a looted mobile phone shop in the southern Ndjili district.

"I'm not against people standing up for their rights but what I don't like is rioting and looting," he said, adding that companies offering rare work opportunities to the largely unemployed population had been targeted.

At the morgue of the general hospital in the north of the city, a police officer guarding the scene told AFP: "There were bodies brought here after the (nearest military) camp morgue was overwhelmed."

The worst of the clashes took place in the centre and south of the city, with police property and offices used by the ruling party and the opposition torched.

Several people were burned alive in the headquarters of the UDPS, led by veteran leader Etienne Tshisekedi.

The looted premises in Ndjili included a depot for agricultural produce set up by the government just two years ago.

"Most people can't afford the corn produced in Congo," said a man who gave just his first name Patrick. "It was anger that made people loot," he added.

"We don't have a particular problem with Kabila but we want him to say publicly that he does not plan to run for another term," he said.

Political tension has gripped the country since Kabila's disputed re-election in November 2011.

Tshisekedi, who officially came second in the poll, has never accepted his defeat and the resulting political deadlock has prevented any direct elections taking place since then.

In its statement read on television, the presidency made no reference to the future of the head of state.

It said Kabila called on the opposition to abandon "the insurgency" and join him in "ongoing dialogue to resolve difficulties arising from organising new (local) elections required by the constitution."

This "national dialogue" began on September 1 between the ruling majority, representatives of civil society and a minority fringe of the opposition to try to sketch a way out of the political crisis.

The Catholic Church, respected for the decisive role it played in the opening to democracy in the 1990s and which participates in the dialogue, said Tuesday they should seek a wider consensus in which it should be "clearly laid down" that Kabila will not stand.

mbb-mj/adp/har/mtp/hg

© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse

Democratic Republic of the Congo: DR Congo unrest ends with death toll at 32

21 September 2016 - 12:05pm
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Kinshasa, DR Congo | AFP | Wednesday 9/21/2016 - 16:56 GMT

by Marc JOURDIER

Police in DR Congo said Wednesday that 32 people had been killed during two days of clashes in the capital Kinshasa this week as security forces brought the wave of violence and looting to an end.

Clashes on Monday and Tuesday saw people burned alive and attacks on police positions, but the worst unrest in the capital since January 2015 appeared to have fizzled out on Wednesday.

"The national police was backed by members of the (army) to stop the acts of looting and vandalism," police spokesman Pierre-Rombaut Mwana-Mputu told reporters, adding that 32 lives were lost in the violence.

He also appealed for help in tracking down weapons stolen from a police station and a dozen other police positions that were looted and set on fire on Tuesday.

Traffic in the capital was lighter than usual on Wednesday and many schoolchildren remained at home. But residents were back on the streets, some inspecting shops and other buildings that were pillaged or gutted by fires.

The official death toll is below estimates from opposition groups, which said more than 50 people died on Monday, but broadly in line with the number given by Human Rights Watch, which put the toll at 37.

Opposition groups had called for demonstrations on Monday to demand the resignation of President Joseph Kabila, who has ruled the Democratic Republic of Congo since 2001 and, under the constitution, should step down on December 20.

The rally had been due to start in the early afternoon, but scuffles between stone-throwing youths and anti-riot police in the morning escalated into what Interior Minister Evariste Boshab described as an attempted "uprising".

Kabila is yet to call elections, fanning fears he plans to stay in power despite pressure to step aside when his mandate ends from his domestic political opponents, as well as the United Nations and Western powers.

  • 'Anger made people loot' -

As shops and petrol stations reopened for business on Wednesday, there was anger as well as relief that the violence appeared to have ended -- even if the underlying political tensions remain as live as ever.

"What happened yesterday and the day before was awful," said Christian, 21, speaking outside a looted mobile phone shop in the southern Ndjili district.

"I'm not against people standing up for their rights but what I don't like is rioting and looting," he said, adding that companies offering rare work opportunities to the largely unemployed population had been targeted.

The worst of the clashes took place in the centre and south of the city, with police property and offices used by the ruling party and the UDPS opposition torched.

Several people were burned alive in the headquarters of the opposition Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS), led by veteran leader Etienne Tshisekedi.

The looted premises in Ndjili included a depot for agricultural produce set up by the government just two years ago. On Wednesday, there was no produce there, just empty containers.

"Most people can't afford the corn produced in Congo," said a man who gave just his first name Patrick. "It was anger that made people loot," he added.

"We don't have a particular problem with Kabila but we want him to say publicly that he does not plan to run for another term," he said.

Political tension has gripped the DR Congo since Kabila's disputed re-election in November 2011.

Tshisekedi, who officially came second in the poll, has never accepted his defeat and the resulting political deadlock has prevented any direct elections taking place since then.

mbb-mj/adp/boc

© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse

Democratic Republic of the Congo: DRC: Populations at Risk - Imminent Risk (15 September 2016)

21 September 2016 - 11:58am
Source: Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)

Populations in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo remain at imminent risk of possible mass atrocity crimes perpetrated by armed groups.

BACKGROUND:

Pervasive insecurity in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has allowed armed groups to perpetrate mass atrocity crimes against civilians. Armed groups – such as the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR), Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) and various Mayi-Mayi militias – have been operating in the DRC for more than 20 years and continue to sporadically attack vulnerable populations in a region that is home to 1.8 million internally displaced persons (IDPs).

Despite offensives conducted by the government's armed forces (FARDC) with assistance from the UN's stabilization mission in the DRC (MONUSCO) and its force intervention brigade, violence committed by dozens of armed groups continues throughout the eastern DRC. Populations in Maniema, Katanga and North Kivu have been particularly affected by fighting between various Mayi-Mayi groups and the FARDC. Several armed groups have also been implicated in kidnapping humanitarian workers.

The FARDC launched offensive operations against the FDLR in February 2015. Although the FARDC has reportedly liberated many localities previously occupied by the group, the FDLR continues to threaten civilians. Inter-communal clashes have also sparked violence between armed groups affiliated with the FLDR, and those affiliated with ethnic Nandes in Lubero and Walikale, North Kivu. On 7 August a series of attacks in Kibirizi resulted in 14 people killed and dozens of homes burned. This follows rising tensions between Hutu and Nande militias in Buleusa, including attacks on IDP camps and reprisal killings.

Elsewhere in North Kivu the ADF and other armed groups have been sporadically attacking villages near Beni, massacring civilians and perpetrating possible crimes against humanity. The ADF is suspected of killing more than 650 people since October 2014, including a 13 August attack where more than 50 people were hacked to death in a village outside Beni. Several people have been killed in reprisal violence and protests against the government's inability to provide adequate protection against the ADF.

The UN Security Council (UNSC) has raised concerns regarding the "risk of instability, insecurity, the potential for violence, human rights violations and abuses and violations of international humanitarian law" ahead of presidential elections. President Joseph Kabila's term is constitutionally-mandated to end in 2016, but the government lacks the capacity to complete voter registration and hold the required elections prior to 2017. Civilians have already been killed in election-related protests in Kinshasa and Goma amid reports of growing political repression. On 1 September a national dialogue was launched to ensure a peaceful political process, but most opposition groups have refused to participate.

ANALYSIS:

While military measures are taken against the FDLR, ADF and other armed groups, civilians remain at risk of reprisal violence. The FARDC and MONUSCO have failed to adequately respond to early warning of attacks, particularly around Beni, and civilians have responded with protests or by forming their own self-defense groups. The FARDC has also been implicated in attacks on civilians, including widespread sexual violence, and often fails to hold its members accountable for human rights violations.

The weakness of government structures undermines attempts to prevent atrocities. This is particularly evident in the eastern DRC, where the government has previously lost control of vast areas to various rebel groups. Instability caused by disagreements over the country's presidential elections may be further exacerbated by these weaknesses and leaves populations at risk of potential political violence.

Despite the government and MONUSCO encouraging militias to participate in disarmament programs prior to launching offensives against them, various armed groups continue to perpetrate abuses against civilians. Competition for control of minerals, as well as underlying conflict between communities that consider themselves indigenous and those perceived as outsiders, has enabled the proliferation of armed groups, which will continue to emerge even after the eradication of the ADF and FDLR if these issues are not resolved. While the government has undertaken important reforms, impunity for crimes committed against civilians continues.

The government of the DRC has struggled to uphold its Responsibility to Protect and its own forces have been complicit in some previous mass atrocity crimes. The DRC needs ongoing international support to prevent recurring violence.

INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE:

The international community has responded to violence in the eastern DRC by taking measures to confront various armed groups. The UNSC currently subjects 9 entities and 31 individuals in the DRC to sanctions. [For responses prior to March 2016, see GCR2P's Timeline of International Response to the Situation in the DRC.]

On 30 March the UNSC extended MONUSCO's mandate until March 2017, emphasizing that the DRC government "bears the primary responsibility to protect civilians within its territory and subject to its jurisdiction, including protection from crimes against humanity and war crimes." The following day the UNSC issued a Presidential Statement reiterating that the 2013 Peace, Security and Cooperation (PSC) Framework remains essential to peace and security in the Great Lakes Region.

On 6 June the African Union (AU), UN, EU and International Organization of the Francophonie issued a statement emphasizing the importance of concluding a national dialogue and that the facilitation group, led by Edem Kodjo, needs to assist in finalizing an elections plan. On 4 July the AU-led "Support Group for Facilitation of the National Dialogue in the DRC" held its inaugural meeting. On 15 July the UNSC issued a Press Statement welcoming the meeting, but raising concerns regarding growing political repression.

On 23 June the UNSC passed Resolution 2293 extending the sanctions regime until 1 July 2017 and including for the first time individuals found to be "planning, directing or committing acts that constitute human rights violations."

On 17 August the UNSC issued a Press Statement condemning the attack on civilians in Beni.

NECESSARY ACTION:

The DRC government and MONUSCO must ensure that protecting civilians remains the primary priority as they address the threat posed by armed groups. The FARDC and MONUSCO need to increase their capacity to respond to early warning of inter-communal violence and attacks by armed groups.

MONUSCO should also support the government in facilitating local peacebuilding initiatives and encourage civil society to help facilitate DDRRR. The government, with MONUSCO's support, should enhance security and protection measures, particularly in eastern DRC and Kinshasa, in advance of the elections. The government and opposition must engage in genuine dialogue regarding the presidential election process and actively discourage political violence.

The FARDC must not permit individuals who have previously committed atrocities to join its forces and should train all recruits in the protection of civilians, respect for human rights and IHL. The government should remove all FARDC members accused of serious human rights violations from leadership positions.

The UN, AU, International Conference for the Great Lakes Region and Southern African Development Community should ensure that all signatories to the PSC Framework continue to fulfill their commitments.

Last Updated: 15 September 2016

Democratic Republic of the Congo: SADC Regional RVAA (as of June 2016)

21 September 2016 - 10:30am
Source: Southern African Development Community Country: Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe

Overview

The SADC region is experiencing a devastating drought episode associated with the 2015/2016 El Nino event which threatens to impact negatively on livelihoods and quality of lives. The region experienced a delayed onset of the 2015/2016, rainfall season, followed by erratic rains. Analysis of rainfall performance shows that the October to December 2015 period, which represents the first half of the cropping season, was the driest in more than 35 years in several southern parts of the region

Recommendations (Short-Term)

  • Member States and development partners should provide immediate humanitarian assistance to those households that are critically food insecure;

  • Member States should intensify and scale up the implementation of safety nets and social protection programmes to address chronic vulnerability and build resilience;

  • Governments and cooperating partners should procure locally (in those countries with surpluses) and regionally as one way of promoting increased future production;

  • Member States should continue to implement agricultural input subsidy programmes that are market driven and take into account local climatic conditions;

  • Member States should encourage crop and dietary diversity

Democratic Republic of the Congo: UNHCR RD CONGO Factsheet, 31 août 2016

21 September 2016 - 9:41am
Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees Country: Angola, Burundi, Central African Republic, Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, South Sudan

EN BREF

27.250 Nouveaux réfugiés sud soudanais arrivés en RDC depuis fin 2015.

95.606 Réfugiés centrafricains en RDC.

31.867 Réfugiés burundais en RDC.

525.978 Réfugiés de la RDC en Afrique.

3.914 Réfugiés rapatriés de la RDC en 2016.