Press ReleaseStatement on Threats against Dr. Denis Mukwege, Nobel Peace Prize Co-Laureate
Statement on Threats against Dr. Denis Mukwege, Nobel Peace Prize Co-Laureate
August 21, 2020 NPO RITA-Congo
Dr. Denis Mukwege — 2018 Nobel Peace Prize Co-Laureate, Congolese gynecological surgeon, and advocate for women’s rights — has been the target of multiple death threats, both online and offline for the past weeks. Reportedly, these intimidation efforts are in response to his condemnation against recent spikes in violence in eastern DRC, and in reaction to his repeated calls to implement the recommendations of the 2010 United Nations Mapping Report to bring justice in the DRC.
Rita-Congo has been working closely with him and Panzi Hospital to support sexual violence survivors. We coordinated his visit to Japan in 2016 and 2019 in order to raise awareness about the sexual violence and conflict minerals, and to promote women’s rights.
It is unacceptable that life threats could be made against Dr. Mukwege, his family members, dedicated staff, and patients at his Panzi Hospital complex in Bukavu in eastern DRC. We urge the government of Japan and UN institutions to protect Dr. Mukwege and work with other countries to end impunity to ensure lasting peace in the region.
The Mapping Report by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) highlights the most serious violations of human rights in the DRC between 1993 and 2003, including the possible genocide. Since the report was published 10 years ago on 1 October 2010, no recommendations were implemented, such as the establishment of a mixed chamber. Dr. Mukwege appealed the international community to follow the recommendation on this Mapping Report at his Nobel Peace Prize Lecture in 2018 and during his visit to Japan in 2019.
Regarding UN Mapping Report, see