Central Africa

Almost 20 Years On – International Justice Still Fails Rwandans

"There is a saying that all Rwandans believe in. You can't forgive if you forget, but when you remember, you know what harmed you and you can forgive and move forward," Honore Gatera tells IPS as he walks through the grounds of the Kigali Memorial Centre in Rwanda’s capital. 

HIV ‘Wave’ Feared in Central Asia

Healthcare systems in Eastern Europe and Central Asia remain woefully unable to cope with HIV/AIDS as the region’s raging epidemic – the fastest growing in the world – takes on a new dimension, a senior UN official has told IPS.

Moving on from Rwanda’s 100 Days of Genocide

Bernard Kayumba, the mayor of Karongi district in western Rwanda, remembers just what it was like to be caught up in the genocide that claimed the lives of almost one million people in 100 days 19 years ago.

CAR Rebels Halt Advance on Capital

Rebels in Central African Republic have said they have halted their advance on the capital, Bangui, and would participate in dialogue, as head of regional African forces warned them against making further moves.

Q&A: Rescuing Child Soldiers in CAR

The protection of children remains critical in the Central African Republic, where parents willingly give their children to armed groups in exchange for protection and services.

DRC Elections – U.N. Condemns Rights Violations

A report by the United Nations Joint Human Rights Office has slammed the government and security forces in the Democratic Republic of Congo, condemning electoral violence linked to the Nov. 30 elections which led to at least 33 deaths in the capital, Kinshasa.

Lukewarm Response to Guilty Verdict for DRC Warlord

The International Criminal Court delivered its first verdict Wednesday: Thomas Lubanga Dyilo was found guilty of recruiting children under the age of 15 to fight in a militia group in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

Children Lost in Aftermath of Congo’s Arms Dump Explosion

Five-year-old Vianey hasn't seen his parents since a series of explosions ripped through an ammunition dump in Brazzaville on Mar. 4. A stranger, Jules Bomboko, said he found Vianey days later, wandering around the Tréchot neighbourhood, a few hundred metres from the site of the blasts.

RIGHTS-DR CONGO: Disabled Left to Fend for Themselves

The outlook for people living with disabilities in the Democratic Republic of Congo remains bleak, despite a variety of efforts to improve their lot and bring them in from the margins of society.

Forest elephants in the Mbeli River, Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park, Congo. Central African countries are developing strategies against climate change. Credit: Thomas Breuer

CENTRAL AFRICA: Tentative Steps Towards Adaptation

Governments and civil society organisations in Central Africa are slowly developing strategies in response to global warming. But specialists say the steps being taken seem hesitant in the face of emerging realities.

Forest elephants in the Mbeli River, Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park, Congo. Central African countries are developing strategies against climate change. Credit: Thomas Breuer/Wikicommons

CENTRAL AFRICA: Tentative Steps Towards Adaptation

Governments and civil society organisations in Central Africa are slowly developing strategies in response to global warming. But specialists say the steps being taken seem hesitant in the face of emerging realities.

DR Congo Troops ‘Killed Civilians’ After Vote

Security forces in the Democratic Republic of Congo have been responsible for the deaths of at least 24 people since President Joseph Kabila's re-election was announced on Dec. 9, Human Rights Watch says.

DR CONGO: Shooting in Kinshasa after Election Results Released

Fears of violent demonstrations against the provisional results of the presidential elections - released on Dec. 9 by the electoral commission - have given way to terror in Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo, which has crackled with the sound of gunshots and the firing of tear gas canisters since Friday afternoon.

HEALTH-DR CONGO: Konzo Still Leaving Women and Children Paralysed

Nadine Mbwol suffers from konzo, an epidemic paralytic disease that affects the lower body. "I lost my marriage because of this disability," she says sadly.

DR CONGO: Election Promises of Peace and Security

The 11 candidates contesting presidential elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo all pledge to improve peace and security in the country - promises received with varying degrees of scepticism by Congolese voters.

DR CONGO: No Real Programme Behind Campaign Promises

"In truth, none of the candidates and none of the parties have a programme for society," asserts Mastaki Mushosi, one of the leaders of the National Union of Catholic School Teachers in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Refugees say Rwanda

OP-ED: Rwandan Refugees Fear Cessation Clause

They should be wary of each other. The historical conflict between their ethnicities has resulted in Africa’s largest genocide.

Former child solider Mulume* (far left) feels hopeless about his future.  Credit:  Einberger/argum/EED/IPS

DR CONGO: Rehabilitating Former Child Soldiers Who “Liked” Killing

Murhula’s* life changed forever when he was nine years old. It was the year that he learned to kill, torture and rape.

There are fears that a "land rush" in the developing world is leading to hunger, conflict and human rights abuses.  Credit: Isaiah Esipisu/IPS

AFRICA: Regulating the Rush for Land

The adoption of international guidelines to regulate so-called land grabs has been pushed to next year after negotiators failed to agree on conditions for large-scale land investments and enforcement.

The leading parties are doing little to ensure greater numbers of women are elected to parliament, but Congolese women are acting for themselves.  Credit: Aubrey Graham/IRIN

DR CONGO: Women Candidates Needed

Women make up just 12 percent of the roughly 18,000 candidates who will stand for election to parliament in the Democratic Republic of Congo's Nov. 28 elections.

DR CONGO: No Hope for Free and Fair Elections

With six weeks to go before the presidential and parliamentary elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo, civil society organisations say the elections will not be fair, as many doubt the ability of the country’s electoral authorities to ensure transparency.

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