News / Africa

UN Upset by Premature Leak of DRC Report

TEXT SIZE - +

The U.N. human rights office in Geneva says it is very upset by the premature leak of the controversial report on the human rights situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).  The agency says the final version of the report, which will be issued shortly, differs in a number of ways from the accounts published by news organizations.

Several news organizations jumped the gun in publishing the U.N. report on 10 years of human rights abuses and atrocities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  But, the U.N. Human Rights Office is directing most of its ire at the French newspaper, Le Monde, which was the first media organization to leak the report.  

Agency spokesman, Rupert Colville, says everyone associated with the report is very upset with Le Monde.  He says the U.N. Office had asked the newspaper to refrain from publishing the story, as the final definitive version would be coming out soon.

Unfortunately, he says the paper did not listen and this has created a messy situation.

"It is an extraordinary report.  It is very unprecedented in many ways.  Its scope is quite amazing.  It is 10 years.  It is the entire DRC.  It is got not simply the East.  It covers three different periods, three different governments in the Congo and it is really an exceptional product," said Colville.  

The published accounts of the draft UN report focuses on crimes committed by the Rwandan army and allied rebels in the DRC.  The report allegedly accuses them of widespread and systematic attacks against Rwandan Hutus who had fled into DRC, formerly known as Zaire, after the 1994 genocide.

During a three-month period in 1994, Rwandan Hutu extremists killed some 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and moderate Hutus.

According to the media accounts, the draft report says Congolese Hutus also were targeted.  It adds such killings could amount to genocide if proven by a competent court.  The Rwandan government angrily dismisses these charges.

Colville refuses to discuss the allegations of genocide.  He says this, as well as all other issues, will be clarified when the final report is published.  He says the report deserves proper consideration.

"It was a very transparent public process," added Colville.  "It was a product of consultations among all the major parts of the U.N. involved in the DRC and very much rose out of the feeling that the scale of the problems in DRC and the scale of the impunity in particular-that Is really the driving force of it-was such that we really needed to have a very, very clear and thorough overview of it all, with a view to improvements, a view to improving the situation."  

About 20 human rights officers were involved in drafting the 545-page report.  Colville says they include top experts on international crimes and on human rights in the DRC.

He says the report contains hundreds and hundreds of human rights incidents between 1993 and 2003.  Although these events occurred some time ago, he says the issues in the report are not outdated.  He says they remain of relevance today.

You May Like

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

John the XXIII and John Paul II will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square on April 27 More

Thailand Reacts to Plots Targeting Israelis

Authorities hope arrest of two Lebanese suspects will disrupt plot to attack young Israeli tourists More

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

'Once Upon a Forest' takes viewers deep into heart of tropical rainforest More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Churchi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
Jerome Socolovsky
April 22, 2014 4:14 PM
On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Robotic Mission Kicks Up Lunar Dust

A robotic mission to the moon was deliberately crashed onto the lunar surface late last week, but not before scientists had collected data gathered by the spacecraft which was designed to self-destruct. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports on the preliminary findings of the craft, called LADEE - an acronym for Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer.
Video

Video Boko Haram Claims Responsibility for Bombing in Nigerian Capital

The Nigerian militant group known as Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for a bombing in the capital on April 14th that killed 75 people. In the video message, Abubakar Shekau, the man who says he ordered the bombing, says nothing about the mass abduction of more than 100 teenage girls, most of whom are still missing. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Abuja.
Video

Video Ukraine Developments Hang Over Obama Trip to Asia

President Barack Obama's trip to Asia this week comes as concerns over Beijing's territorial ambitions are growing in the region. Those concerns have been compounded by Russia's recent actions in Ukraine and the possibility that Chinese strategists might be looking to Crimea as a model for its territorial disputes with its neighbors. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid