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Campaign to end impunity 2013 - 22nd day


Province Orientale: Journalist kidnapped by soldiers in the practice of his profession

Jean-Paul Basila, journalist with the Radio okapi, a UN station broadcasting in Bunia, a town about 700 km from Kisangani, in the Province Orientale (north- eastern DRC), was arrested, on Saturday  31 August 2013 by a group of elements from the Armed Forces of the DRC (FARDC). The journalist was accused of interviewing an accomplice of Mr. Cobra Matata, militia leader of “ Force Patriotique de Résistance de l'Ituri (FPRI)” operating in Province Orientale.
Jean Paul Basila was arrested in a restaurant by eight FARDC soldiers, when he was interviewing Serge Lossa, former head of Bunia. Lossa had been thrown into a jeep and sent to Kinshasa, the capital of DRC. As for Basila, he was driving his own car under the surveillance of armed soldiers towards the former FARDC operational zone headquarters. Arrived a few miles from the head office of the UN Mission for Stabilization in Congo (MONUSCO), the reporter took the risk to direct the car towards the main gate while shouting for a help. He succeeded in escaping thanks to the popular clamor created by taxi drivers at the sight of his arrest. The police officers standing outside the headquarters of MONUSCO rescued the journalist and gave him a shelter in their facilities.
JED strongly condemned the attempt of kidnapping the journalist in full practice of his profession, by heavily armed military. But no investigation had been launched by neither the military or judiciary authorities in order to know the ins and outs of this case.
Untitled Document
République Démocratique du Congo / Kinshasa
Butembo: JED regrets the closure of "Radio Liberté" and calls on journalists to more responsibility

Journaliste en Danger (JED) learned the decision over the suspension for three months of Radio Liberté, private station broadcasting in Butembo, the third city in North Kivu province (eastern DRC). This decision was taken by the mayor of this city following the broadcast of statements from a head of an armed militia and a mutineer, calling for the fight against the DRC’s army forces (FARDC). Several journalists were shortly arrested and another detained in a police holding cell.

JED regrets this decision on the media closure and regards any act, which tends to muzzle the press or to remove an area of freedom and expression, as negative and detrimental to democracy. However, JED calls on journalists and media to exercise responsibility in their work. "When a country is in war, journalists should exercise extreme caution and have a maximum reserve as far as their own safety is concerned," said the Secretary-General JED Tshivuadi. "This incident could have been settled other than by the closure, including a warning or a professional sanction," concluded the Secretary General of JED.

According to information obtained by JED, the facilities of Radio Liberté have been surrounded, on Sunday 13 May 2012 at 7 o’clock local time, by several elements from the Armed Forces (FARDC), the National police (PNC) and the National Intelligence Agency (ANR) who took away the transmitter and the generator before arresting eight journalists found in situ.

The day before, Mr. Sikuli Masaka mayor of Butembo, addressed to the head of Radio Liberté a letter in which he suspended for three months the radio’s programmes. Radio Liberty was accused of "demoralizing the FARDC troops in war against rebels" in the province of North Kivu.

Actually, Radio Liberté broadcast, on Monday 7 May 2012, a programme named "Animation Volcano" in which the journalist Pili Pili Kasayi offered, by phone, two interviews with General La Fontaine and Colonel Kahasa respectively leader of a militia called “Congolese Resistance Patriots (PARECO)” and a FARDC official in defection now. La Fontaine said he would fight the FARDC to control some areas of the province and Colonel Kahasa said he left the FARDC for personal reasons and that he would be present in the bush to organize his troops.

Pili Pili was arrested on Sunday May 13 early morning, at his home and taken to the police where he has been detained. The eight journalists arrested at the station, were taken to the local office of the ANR (Intelligence service) where they were kept for several hours before their release thanks to the population’s pressure.

Contacted by JED, Mohindo Ulrich, director of Radio Liberté reported that police and intelligence officers have seized the station’s materials without any proceedings.

JED urges the provincial authorities to put an end to this incident, to order the release of detained journalist and enable Radio Liberté to resume its programmes.

Sunday 01 March 2015.

Flash news
South Africa mourns Mandela, will bury him on December 15

06 December 2013

South Africans united in mourning for Nelson Mandela on Friday, but while some celebrated his remarkable life with dance and song, others fretted that the anti-apartheid hero's death would make the nation vulnerable again to racial and social tensions.
UN launches unmanned surveillance aircraft to better protect civilians in vast DR Congo

3 December 2013

With top United Nations and Government officials and a crowd of reporters looking on, the world Organization today launched its first-ever unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), in the interest of better protecting civilians in the restive east of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
UN peacekeeping chief in Eastern DR Congo to inaugurate new protection technology, sees progress

North Kivu, 2 December 2013

On a visit to the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) today, the head of United Nations peacekeeping operations said that the situation in the region, where civilians have suffered through recurrent insurgencies, showed evidence of improvement, and gave hope for further progress.
World AIDS Day: UN hails gains in combating virus, urges greater action towards 'zero discrimination'

1 December 2013

While welcoming the solid progress being made in the fight against HIV/AIDS, United Nations officials marked World AIDS Day with urgent appeals for the international community to work even harder to end stigma, discrimination and complacency, to stop new HIV infections among children and to ensure access to care and treatment for all those that need it.
UN envoy to the Great Lakes in region to push conclusion of Kampala Dialogue

Kinshasa, 25 November 2013

Mary Robinson, the Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for the Great Lakes, has begun a week-long mission to help shore up peace efforts in the region, visiting Tanzania, Rwanda, Congo-Brazzaville, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

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