Civilians, Rule of Law, and Democratic Freedoms
With the disintegration of the rule of law in Congo and elsewhere in the region, Congo has become the battle ground for the interests of its neighbors and a Congolese political and military elite—all at the expense of Congolese civilians. In this context, neither the Congolese government and its allies, the RCD and its backers, nor the myriad of militia and rebel groups in Congo have made respect for human rights a priority. Without firm action from international players in the region and elsewhere, the results for the Congolese are likely to be more abuses and a further degradation of the situation. This report is based on Human Rights Watch field investigations in November and December of 1998 to eastern and western Congo as well as other countries in the region.