D. R. Congo


Twelve parties were listed for grave violations against children in 2016, including the DRC armed forces (FARDC). The Government signed an action plan in 2012 to end and prevent recruitment and use of children and sexual violence by the FARDC. In March, the Council will receive the SG’s progress report on MONUSCO and renew its mandate per SCR 2277 (2016). On February 11, 2017, the Head of MONUSCO strongly condemned the Kamuina Nsapu militia’s recruitment and use of children in the Kasais. The latest report (S/2016/1130, para 51) noted that in total, 49 boys were separated or escaped from armed groups, while 10 boys were documented as having been newly recruited by armed groups. The report further noted that a total of 20 boys formerly associated with armed groups were released from FARDC custody and handed over to MONUSCO, while 6 remained in detention at the time of writing. After the development of an implementation plan and following the amendment of its code of conduct in January 2016 to increase the minimum age of combatants to 18 years old, the listed group APCLS signed in November 2016 the Geneva Call’s Deed of Commitment protecting children in armed conflict, which resulted in the release of more than 40 children from the group. The Security Council should:

  • Maintain MONUSCO’s capacity to document and verify grave violations against children through allocation of sufficient budgetary resources and staff to the Child Protection Unit; and specifically ensure that child protection expertise is maintained, that Child Protection Advisors (CPAs) maintain direct access to senior mission leadership, and that their role as protection actors remains clearly distinct from that of the human rights monitors;
  • Encourage MONUSCO to continue supporting the Government’s full implementation of the action plan to prevent and end the recruitment and use of children as soldiers and sexual violence against children;
  • Urge MONUSCO to engage in dialogue with armed groups for the release of children, and to end the recruitment and use of boys and girls; to this end, urge the Government to allow unimpeded access to armed groups;
  • Urge the Government to ensure that children encountered during military operations are treated in accordance with IHRL and IHL, and transferred without delay to child protection actors; children associated with armed groups should be primarily treated as victims and should not be arrested, detained, or interrogated on the sole basis of their alleged association with armed groups.

France is the lead country on the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Egypt chairs the 1533 Sanctions Committee.

This information is based on Watchlist’s Children and Armed Conflict Monthly Update: March 2017.


In the Democratic Republic of Congo, Watchlist’s Partnerships Program supports one local civil society organization to strengthen its capacity to monitor, report, and respond to grave violations against children. Local partners play an instrumental role in mobilizing and training community-based protection structures to alert in case of grave violations. They also engage with local authorities to improve access to referral services and to prevent violations.


UN Action

Year listed: 2003
Action Plans signed: FARDC (the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo) – recruitment and use of children and sexual violence against children (October 2012)
Sanctions Committee: Sanctions Committee concerning Democratic Republic of Congo
Secretary-General’s reports on CAAC in DRC: 20142010; 2008; 2007; 2006
Security Council Working Group conclusions on DRC: 20142011200920072006

Perpetrators listed in the annexes of the Secretary-General’s annual reports on children and armed conflict

2001 2002 2003 2005 2006 2007 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo a
Forces armees congolaises (FAC) a
Forces armees de la Republique Democratique du Congo (FARDC)~* a a,b,c,e a,b,c,e a,c,d,f a,c a,c a,c a,c a,c a,c a,c
Mouvement national de liberation du Congo (MLC) a a
Rassemblement congolais pour la democratie (RCD)-Goma a a
Local defence forces associated with RCD-Goma a
Rassemblement congolais pour la democratie (RCD)-National a a
Rassemblement congolais pour la democratie (RCD)-Kisangani/ML a a
Union des patriotes congolais (UPC) (Hema militia) a a
Union des patriotes congolais (UPC)-Thomas Lubanga and Florimert Kisembo factions a
Parti pour l’unite et la sauvenarge du Congo (PUSIC) (Hema Militias) a a
Masunzu’s forces a a
Lendu militias a
Front nationaliste et integrationaliste (FNI) (Lendu) a a,b a a,e a a,c a,c
Front populaire pour la reconciliation de l’Ituri (FPRI) (Ngiti) a
Ex-FAR/Interahamwe a a
Mai-Mai a a
Mai-Mai in the Kivus, Maniema and Katanga a,b
Mai-Mai groups in North and South Kivu, Maniema and Katanga who have not integrated into FARDC a a,e
Mai-Mai “Lafontaine”/Union des Patriotes Congolais pour la Paix (UPCP) a,d,f a,c a,c a,c a a a a
Mai Mai Alliance des patriotes pour un Congo libre et souverain (APCLS) “Colonel Janvier” a a a a
Mayi Mayi Simba c a,c a,c a,c
Mai Mai “Tawimbi” a
Forces armes populaires congolaises (FAPC) a a,b
Mudundu-40 a a
Laurent Nkunda and Jules Mutebutsi, dissident elements of FARDC a,c
Non-integrated FARDC elements loyal to rebel leader Laurent Nkunda a,e a,b,c,e
Force democratique de liberation du Rwanda (FDLR)* a,b,c a,e a,b,c,e a a,c a,c a,c,d a,c,d a,c,d a,c,d a,c,d
Front de resistance patriotique en Ituri (FRPI)*/Front Populaire pour la Justice au Congo (FPJC)) a,e a,c a,c a,c a,c a,c,d a,c,d a,c,d
Mouvement revolutionnaire congolais (MRC) a,e
Congres national pour la defense du peuple (CNDP), formerly led by Laurent Nkunda and now Bosco Ntaganda a,b,d a,c a,c a,c
Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA)* a,b,c,e a,c a,c a,c a,b,c a,b,c a,b,c a,b,c,e
Mouvement du 23 Mars (M23) a,c a,c
Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) a,d a,b,d a,b,d
Mayi Mayi Kata Katanga a a a
Nduma Defense Coalition (NDC)/Cheka a,b a,b a,b
Mayi Mayi Nyatura a a a
Rayia Mutomboki a,c

a: Parties that recruit and use children
b: Parties that kill and maim children
c: Parties that commit rape and other forms of sexual violence against children

d: Parties that engage in attacks on schools and/or hospitals
e: Parties that engage in abduction of children
f: Parties that deny humanitarian access to children

~ This party has concluded an action plan with the United Nations in line with Security Council resolutions 1539 (2004) and 1612 (2005).
* This party has been in the annexes for at least five years and is therefore considered a persistent perpetrator.