START in the Democratic Republic of Congo

START’s priorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo were established in 2009 and are in keeping with Canada’s commitment to support the various peace processes and the UN Security and Stability Strategy. Moreover, Canadian involvement strongly supports the Pact on Peace, Stability, Security and Development in the Great Lakes region.

The main objectives of START’s involvement in the Democratic Republic of Congo are as follows:

  • To strengthen the professionalization of security stakeholders, including the armed forces, police, the justice system and the correctional system in order to ensure security and respect for human rights in the country.
  • To strengthen the government’s capacity to regulate and control metal and ore production and trade in strategic mining areas in the eastern areas of the Democratic Republic of Congo.
  • To support mediation in land disputes to facilitate the return and reintegration of internally displaced persons and refugees.

To support the implementation of reconciliation initiatives and dialogue locally, regionally and nationally.

Initiatives supported by START, through the Global Peace and Security Fund, include:

  • Land conflict prevention and mediation program in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo: This program tackles land disputes and litigation on land disputes in war-affected zones of the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo.
  • Child Protection and Prevention of Sexual- and Gender-Based Violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo: This project seeks to enhance national and provincial capacities to manage the causes and effects of sexual- and gender-based violence, and to help protect children.
  • Building Capacity for Natural Resource Management in the Democratic Republic of Congo and in the Great Lakes Region: This project provides technical assistance to the Secretariat of the International Commission for the Great Lakes Region and to the government of the Democratic Republic of Congo.  The purpose is to support efforts to develop a regional mechanism for certifying natural resources extracted in the Great Lakes region.

United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (MONUSCO)

Canada supports the key role MONUSCO is playing in supporting the Democratic Republic of Congo’s stability. We currently deploy up to eleven military officers and four police to contribute to advancing key areas of the mission’s mandated work, such as strengthening the military justice system and the rule of law.

MONUSCO’s core mandate includes ensuring the protection of civilians, supporting the Congolese armed forces (FARDC) to end military operations against armed groups, carrying out activities of disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of Congolese armed groups and contributing to reforming Congolese security institutions.