Deaths in DRC detention centres doubled in 2012, says UN report

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The number of people who have died in detention in the Democratic Republic of the Congo almost doubled in 2012, according to a United Nations report released on Wednesday.

The report is based on information collected by UN human rights officers during visits to prisons and other detention centres throughout the country.

It says that between January 2010 and December 2012 at least 211 civilians died in Congolese detention centres.

The report notes that poor conditions, including overcrowding, malnutrition, limited access to health care and lack of resources, were the main causes of death.

It adds that more than 10 percent of the deaths or 24 cases were caused by torture or ill-treatment, a finding it describes as "extremely worrying."

The report recognizes that the lack of resources and equipment in the penitentiary services has a direct impact on the number of deaths in detention.

However, it places much of the blame on the rampant corruption and lack of transparency affecting the management of prisons in the country.

It reminds the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo of its obligations to protect and take care of people in detention.

Derrick Mbatha, United Nations.

Duration: 1'33"

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