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S&Ds: Hands off Dr. Mukwege. We have the moral duty to ensure protection and call for justice in Congo DRC


17 Sep 2020



Following the call put forward last week by Dr. Mukwege during an exchange of views in the subcommittee on human rights (DROI), and on an initiative of the S&D Group, the European Parliament has today adopted an urgency resolution demanding protection for Dr. Mukwege, the founder of Panzi Hospital, and call on the international community to ensure justice is done for the crimes against humanity committed in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

Dr. Mukwege received the Sakharov Prize in 2014 from the European Parliament, and the Nobel Peace Prize in 2018.

Chair of the human rights subcommittee and S&D rapporteur, Maria Arena MEP, stated:

“Hands off Dr. Mukwege and his Panzi Hospital. The S&D Group and the whole European Parliament stand behind Dr. Mukwege, and the Panzi Hospital which saves hundreds of women’s lives every day in the Region of North Kivu, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The heinous death threats Dr Mukwege has recently denounced must be swiftly neutralised and followed up. A solid protection must also be ensured.”

“We call again on the international community to finally implement the Mapping Report's recommendations and to set up an independent international court to judge the crimes against humanity perpetrated in DRC before 2002.

“We are perfectly aware of the obscure role played by some Western enterprises in financing the mineral conflicts in DRC. As Europeans we have, therefore, the moral duty and the political responsibility to demand justice is done. Without justice, peace, development and eventually democracy, cannot flourish."

S&D member of the committee on foreign affairs, Isabel Santos, added:

“The situation of Dr. Mukwege is a very fragile one, and we must use all our power to keep him safe. It is unacceptable that one of the most important and recognisable fighters for justice and against impunity in the world, is now also under threat because of his work and his declarations.

“I salute the decision of The United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) to keep protecting the Panzi Hospital where Dr. Mukwege plays a fundamental role in the life of so many women and girls that desperately need his help.

“We must support the international organisations that allow him to keep fighting for a better future in the Congo DRC and put pressure on the Congolese government to implement reforms that go beyond the Mapping Report of 2010.”