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Country analysis > Democratic Republic of Congo Last update: 2020-11-27  

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The Democratic Republic of the Congo is coming out of a period of violent internal conflict characterized by the active engagement of neighbouring countries. The entire state structure and economy have been left in a state of disarray and degradation. The absence of rule of law, the extended period of dictatorship, impunity and massive human rights violations negatively affected human security in the country. At the end of a long negotiating process that started at the end of the 1998 war, the Global and Inclusive Agreement was signed on 16 December 2002 to end hostilities and search for peaceful, equitable solutions to the crisis. Within the framework of that agreement, the parties agreed to a 24-month political transition period. Following a one-year extension, the transition will officially end in June 2006, with general elections.

A series of multifaceted challenges arise from this context, amongst which the following are worth underscoring: (1) Responding to the unbalanced processes of development and wealth distribution through appropriate good governance related interventions, including justice and legal reform, reconciliation, public administration reform and economic governance; (2) Reversing the current weak development capacity stemming from a system of militarized, centralized governance, through capacity building, security sector reform and local governance-related interventions; (3) Addressing the pressing and increasing needs of war-affected populations to reduce vulnerability; and (4) Ensuring sustainable peace through recovery of the productive capacities and restoration of the social fabric.

In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the United Nations works within the framework of an integrated mission approach, ensuring coordination with partners and stakeholders on an ongoing basis through various consultative and partnership mechanisms.

At the United Nations/inter-agency level, collaborative efforts are under way to support national development planning and management, including: (a) the PRSP process, in ways that contribute to redressing current imbalances, (b) addressing sexual and gender-based violence, (c) the rule of law, (d) DDR and security sector reform; (e) support to electoral process and transitional authorities; (f) community recovery, reintegration and reconciliation; (g) natural resource management to reduce conflict and enhance livelihoods; and (h) the fight against pandemics such as HIV/AIDS, Malaria and Tuberculosis.

Within this context, UNDP and UNFPA play a critical role in trying to address structural dysfunctionalities and the underlying causes of conflict by defining and implementing sustainable recovery and development-related solutions. Two critical interventions are worth highlighting: (a) sexual and gender-based violence, and (b) disarmament, demobilization and reintegration. UNDP and UNFPA have engaged in joint programming during 2005 in the areas of gender-based violence, and DDR and will further increase and cement joint programming activities in these areas, as well as others, in 2006.

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