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Recommendations on the Fight Against Impunity for Grave International Crimes

From April 27 to May 2, 2015, the Congolese Ministry of Justice and Human Rights is convening “Etats Généraux,” a large conference to evaluate justice sector reform in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The conference will be held in the capital, Kinshasa…
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The rebel Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) continues to kill civilians and abduct children in remote regions of central Africa at an alarming rate with no end in sight. Nearly three years after the LRA began its most current campaign of attacking villages and…
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The Risks of Putting Justice Aside for Peace

Introduction I. Afghanistan II. Burundi III. Democratic Republic of the Congo IV. Indonesia Conclusion Introduction Since the end of the Cold War in the early 1990s, the belief that those responsible for serious human rights abuses should be…
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A mixed chamber and other accountability measures

Introduction I. Establishing a mixed chamber for the Congo: why, what and how? II. The role of the African Union III. Other measures to address grave crimes committed in the DRC   Introduction On October 1, 2010, the United Nations' Office of…
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I. Introduction II. Rationale for a mixed chamber III. Legal foundation IV. International participation V. Capacity-building/sharing expertise I. Introduction Human Rights Watch has worked closely and extensively with the Congolese justice system in a…
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Early History (1300s - 1800s)The Belgians (1870s - 1959)Independence (1960 - 1990s)War (1994 - 1999)Failed Peace Efforts (1999 - 2003)Transition (2003 - 2006) A New Government but More Conflict (2006 - ) Early History 1300s The Kongo empire, a highly…
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Strengthening the Security Council’s Response to Sexual Violence and Attacks on Education in Armed Conflict

For a full decade, the UN Security Council has addressed the severe abuses that children experience in armed conflict. Its response has included a series of six resolutions (1261, 1314, 1379, 1460, 1539, and 1612), the creation of a specialized working…
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A Human Rights Watch Briefing Paper

Human Rights Watch is pleased with the implementation six months ago of a program for the urgent restoration of the criminal justice system in Bunia, Ituri province ("the program"). This program is the result of a joint effort by the government of the DRC…
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A Human Rights Watch Briefing Paper

Human Rights Watch strongly believes that accountability for serious past crimes is the foundation for post-conflict reconstruction based on the rule of law and respect for human rights. This Briefing Paper looks at the challenges in addressing impunity…
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(Washington, DC) - Under President Bush's November 13th Military Order on military commissions, any foreign national designated by the President as a suspected terrorist or as aiding terrorists could potentially be detained, tried, convicted and even…
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Joseph Kabila, newly installed president of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), has inherited an intractable war, a near void of civil institutions, and a legacy of human rights abuses committed under the rule of his father, the late President…