Advancing human rights protection in the DRC

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has witnessed significant progress in protecting the rights of individuals living in vulnerable situations. 

These advancements are the result of extensive efforts by civil society, both at the national and international levels, as well as through recommendations received by the state within the framework of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR).


One notable aspect of this commitment is the changes made by the State to enhance the protection of human rights defenders (HRDs).  The DRC  has recently adopted a significant law aimed at protecting HRDs, making it the fifth African country to do so. The journey toward enacting Law N° 23 / 027 involved years of advocacy and collaboration among national stakeholders and international organizations. Initiatives like the consultations of civil society actors around the UPR, as the ones facilitated by UPR Info and the Carter Center, played a pivotal role in fostering dialogue and consensus-building, ultimately leading to the bill's passage by the National Assembly in December 2022. Nonetheless, there remains significant work to ensure that this law effectively safeguards human rights defenders adequately. 

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Substantial attention has been devoted to enhancing the rights of people with disabilities. Through the establishment of dedicated ministries and the enactment of legislation guaranteeing improved access to education, employment, and healthcare services, the DRC aims to foster inclusivity and equal opportunities for all members of society. Such measures not only empower individuals with disabilities but also contribute to building a more equitable and accessible society for everyone. 

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Additionally, efforts have been directed towards addressing the historical marginalization and discrimination faced by indigenous communities in the DRC. Legislation aimed at protecting and promoting the rights of indigenous Pygmy peoples signifies a significant step forward in acknowledging and rectifying past injustices. By implementing legal frameworks to combat discrimination and enhance livelihoods, the DRC underscores its dedication to upholding the rights and dignity of all its citizens, regardless of their background or ethnicity. 

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