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Democratic Republic of Congo: Human Rights

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 22nd March 2018.

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Photo of Lord Alton of Liverpool Lord Alton of Liverpool Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty's Government what discussions they have had with the government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo regarding (1) the recent murder of Father Florent Mbulanthie Tulantshiedi, (2) the escalating suppression of critics of the government in that country, and (3) how members of the clergy and civil society leaders can be protected from such intimidation and brutality.

Photo of Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Minister of State

The British Government has repeatedly condemned the Congolese authorities’ use of violence against peaceful demonstrators. We released statements on 3 January and 23 January, following the deaths of protestors on 31 December 2017 and 21 January 2018. The statements called on the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) government to investigate and hold accountable security force members who fired on civilians or ordered the use of lethal force. We also released a statement before the 25 February 2018 protests, calling on the DRC government to open political space and allow peaceful demonstrations. We will continue to pressure the DRC government to allow peaceful assembly and worship.

The peacekeeping mission in DRC (MONUSCO) has a mandate to protect civilians including in the context of elections. In the upcoming negotiations to renew MONUSCO’s mandates we will ensure that this provision is protected.

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