UN Human Rights Council 42nd Session – Item 10

UN Human Rights Council 42nd Session

Item 10 – Enhanced ID on OHCHR report on the Democratic Republic of Congo

25th September 2019

Intervention by ESTONIA

Mr. President,

Estonia aligns itself with the statement by the European Union and thanks the distinguished speakers for their presentations.

Estonia is deeply concerned about the continued human rights violations in the conflict areas of the DRC. The fighting in North-Eastern DRC, which stems from decades-long tensions and disputes over land and resources, has destroyed villages and displaced more than 300,000 people in Ituri province since mid-June. Estonia supports the cooperation of international and regional partners on democratic consolidation, promotion and protection of human rights to prevent further violence in the country.

We welcome the partial opening up of democratic space after the elections, and encourage the Government to contiue their efforts in that regard to respect and protect the freedom of expression, media and peaceful assembly.

With the increasing number of reported cases of sexual violence, Estonia would reiterate its call to the Government to strengthen the prevention of conflict-related sexual violence and to ensure zero tolerance in this regard. The offenders must be brought to justice to ensure the protection of and adequate reparations to the victims.

Estonia joins the Human Rights Committee in calling on the DRC government to respect the right of every citizen to participate in public affairs and to take all necessary measures to increase women’s participation in public life.

Thank you!