EUPOL RD CONGO is a European Union police mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo providing assistance, mentoring, support and advice to the Congolese authorities for security sector reform (SSR) in the fields of policing and its interaction with the justice system. It also operates in cross-cutting areas of SSR, particularly human rights, gender, the protection of children in armed conflicts and the fight against impunity for sexual violence. It does not have the competence, nor is it intended, to replace the Congolese police in their tasks and responsibilities. The mandate for the EUPOL RD CONGO mission has been extended until 30 September 2013.
Chief Superintendent Jean-Paul Rikir (Belgium) has been Head of Mission since 1 October 2010. Launched in July 2007, EUPOL RD CONGO was then headed by Superintendent Adílio Custódio (Portugal).
The EUPOL RD CONGO mission comprises 47 international members from both the civilian and police sectors, who contribute technical expertise in the fields of policing, civil and criminal justice, human rights, the rights of children in armed conflicts and gender equality and, since October 2009, expertise in combating impunity for sexual violence.
The EUPOL RD CONGO headquarters are located in Kinshasa. It also has a branch in Goma (North Kivu) in order to contribute to the stabilisation process in the east of the country, in particular in the areas of policing, human rights, child protection, gender equality and combating sexual violence.
The EUPOL RD CONGO mission took over from EUPOL-KINSHASA, which was the first EU police mission in Africa and was deployed to Kinshasa from February 2005 to June 2007. Its work was part of the international assistance efforts to provide security during the elections.
In recent years, the EU has demonstrated its commitment to supporting the process of lasting stabilisation of the DRC through political action, aid, and military and police missions. EUPOL RD CONGO is part of this comprehensive, long-term approach.
On 26 April 2010, the Council welcomed the work of EUPOL RD Congo in supporting the reform of the Congolese national police and its interaction with the justice sector, in particular recent positive results, such as the promulgation of the Organic Law for the Police in August 2011. The Council also noted the adoption of other significant documents such as the Police Action Plan and the important coordination work conducted by the Comité de Suivi de la Réforme de la Police (CSRP).
The Council welcomed the work started by the mission antennas in Goma and the reinforced effort in the area of criminal investigation, including the fight against impunity and sexual violence.