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Democratic Republic of the Congo: Attacks on the central prison in Bukavu in May or June 2005; whether any prisoners escaped

Publisher Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada
Author Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Ottawa
Publication Date 20 November 2008
Citation / Document Symbol COD102999.E
Cite as Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Democratic Republic of the Congo: Attacks on the central prison in Bukavu in May or June 2005; whether any prisoners escaped, 20 November 2008, COD102999.E, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/49b92b4fc.html [accessed 19 September 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Information on attacks on or escapes from the central prison in Bukavu in May or June 2005 could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate.

However, human rights sources report that in May and June 2004, "dissident soldiers," many of whom were Tutsi or members of the Tutsi-related Banyamulenge ethnic group, attacked and briefly occupied the South Kivu town of Bukavu (HRW 2005; International Crisis Group 7 July 2004, 4-5). Articles published by the United Nations (UN) Integrated Regional Information Networks (IRIN) indicate that during the occupation, the "dissident forces" destroyed a prison in Bukavu, allowing approximately 300 prisoners to escape (29 June 2004; UN 1 July 2004). A July 2004 article by Réseau d'organisations des droits humains et d'education civique d'inspiration chrétienne (RODHECIC), a Kinshasa-based network of Christian organizations working to promote human rights and education (RODHECIC n.d.), indicates that insurgents freed prisoners in Bukavu and other towns during the [translation] "recent war" without specifying the date (RODHECIC 29 July 2004). Human Rights Watch (HRW) corroborates that prisoners escaped during the June 2004 conflict in Bukavu; however, HRW does not specify how many (Mar. 2005). In addition, a 2007 report by the UN Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (Mission des Nations Unies en République Démocratique du Congo, MONUC), indicates that the director of the central prison in Bukavu was sentenced to 18 months' imprisonment in relation to prisoner escapes on 4 June 2004 and 15 July 2006 (UN 8 Feb. 2007, Para. 111).

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim for refugee protection. Please find below the list of sources consulted in researching this Information Request.

References

Human Rights Watch (HRW). March 2005. "The Prosecution of an RCD-Goma Soldier: Precedent or Human Rights Abuse?" Seeking Justice: The Prosecution of Sexual Violence in the Congo War. [Accessed 7 Nov. 2008]
_____. 2005. "Democratic Republic of the Congo." World Report 2005. [Accessed 6 Nov. 2008]

International Crisis Group. 7 July 2004. "Pulling Back from the Brink in the Congo." [Accessed 6 Nov. 2008]

Réseau d'organisations des droits humains et d'education civique d'inspiration chrétienne (RODHECIC). 29 July 2004. "Rapport sur la situation des prisons dans la province du Sud-Kivu." [Accessed 6 Nov. 2008]
_____. N.d. "Qui sommes-nous?" [Accessed 6 Nov. 2008]

United Nations (UN). 8 February 2007. MONUC Human Rights Division. The Human Rights Situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) During the Period of July to December 2006. [Accessed 6 Nov. 2008]
_____. 1 July 2004. Integrated Regional Information Networks (IRIN). "DRC: 172 Inmates Escape from Lubumbashi Prison." [Accessed 7 Nov. 2008]
_____. 29 June 2004. Integrated Regional Information Networks (IRIN). "DRC: Prisoners' Escape Linked to Bukavu Rebel Occupation." [Accessed 7 Nov. 2008]

Additional Sources Consulted

Internet sites, including: AllAfrica, Amnesty International (AI), British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), Fund for Global Human Rights, Global Security, The Independent, Independent Online (IOL), Institute for War and Peace Reporting (IPWR), International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), Norwegian Council for Africa, Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), Religious Intelligence, United Kingdom (UK) Home Office, United States (US) Department of State, Voice of America (VOA).

Copyright notice: This document is published with the permission of the copyright holder and producer Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB). The original version of this document may be found on the offical website of the IRB at http://www.irb-cisr.gc.ca/en/. Documents earlier than 2003 may be found only on Refworld.

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