Document Type: Policy Makers Tools

Observation report on the Chebeya-Bazana case before the Kinshasa-Gombe military court

16 November 2011

Protection International (PI) helps and supports Congolese NGOs in the defense of human rights defenders and their rights.

Due to the prevailing climate of impunity of the Democratic Republic of Congo and specially in relation with abuses against human rights defenders, it’s been necessary to make an appeal on a fair trial, the compliance of the international standards and the observation of the process.

Attending hearings, pointing out violations committed and reporting and submitting independent press releases regularly allows public opinion, at a national and international level, to be aware of the decisions taken by judges in order to encourage them to respect the international standards. It also aims to encourage the executive authority to abstain from any intervention outside the law. The presence of domestic and international observers provides moral support to the actors involved in the case. In particular, this presence of international observers provides protection as it would increase the ”political costs” of a case of bad functioning by the international community.

Furthermore, the analysis work on the violations committed in specific cases allows to highlight the failures of the system and its causes. In this case, PI’s mission was to support Congolese NGOs and victims in their fight against impunity towards human rights defenders.

Authors: Sophie Roudil y Gaëlle Perrier, in collaboration with the PI team in the DRC.