Local reporters in war-torn Eastern provinces gain international
TORONTO, Dec. 18, 2012 /CNW/ - Journalists for Human Rights (JHR) has
launched a new live-blog, News from DR Congo featuring Congolese journalists on the ground in the city of Goma.
The blog will provide unique, local perspectives on the current Congo
conflict and will put a human face on a region and country in crisis.
Since Goma fell to the M23 rebel group on November 20, 2012, the freedom
of local media has been severely restricted and Congolese voices have
been largely absent from the international coverage of the conflict.
"One of the first actions of the M23 rebels was to shut down the local
press," said Rachel Pulfer, Executive Director of Journalists for Human
Rights. "This initiative is to ensure the word gets out from and
through Congolese journalists about what is actually happening in the
conflict zone. It's also to make sure the voices of those who are being
most affected by this crisis - the average citizen - are not overlooked
amidst all the coverage of geopolitical wrangling."
News from DR Congo will feature work by JHR-trained journalists in the cities of Goma,
Bukavu and surrounding areas who will live blog from the streets for
the next two weeks.
Contributors will focus on human rights issues, from extraordinary
incidents of "popular justice," as citizens take the law into their own
hands, to the impact the invasion has had on the lives of children no
longer able to go to school.
"To ensure the journalists' safety, they will be publishing
anonymously," explained Ms Pulfer. "Though the M23 rebels have
retreated from Goma, their influence remains strong and our utmost
priority is the safety and well being of the journalists working with
As the international community's attention has shifted to peace talks
under way in Uganda, News from DR Congo will ensure that the voices and lives of those whose futures hang in the
balance will not be overlooked.
News from DR Congo can be found at
Notes for Editors:
Journalists for Human Rights (JHR) is Canada's leading media development
JHR was founded in 2002, and trains journalists in human rights
reporting. JHR has worked in 17 African countries, and currently works
in Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ghana and the DR Congo.
By training journalists, JHR builds their capacity to report ethically
and effectively on human rights and governance issues. The more people
are aware and free to discuss human rights, the more they will hold
their governments to account, leading to improved public services, less
corruption, better economic opportunities and stronger democratic
JHR has trained over 12,000 journalists and journalism students. Stories
produced by JHR-trained journalists have reached approximately 50
Stories produced by JHR-trained journalists have gotten corrupt
government ministers fired (Education Minister in Liberia, 2009)
sparked new laws against domestic abuse (Sierra Leone, 2012) and
brought doctors to hospitals in rural areas of Liberia.
SOURCE: jhr (Journalists for Human Rights)
For further information:
For further information or to syndicate the liveblog feed, please contact:
Claire Hastings, Director of Community Engagement
email@example.com, 416.413.0240x206 (o) 416.836.4640(m)