The Enough Project is deeply saddened by the deaths of United Nations Group of Experts investigators Michael Sharp and Zaida Catalán and their interpreter, Betu Tshintela. Their driver, Isaac Kabuayi and two unidentified motorbike drivers traveling with the group are still missing. We extend our condolences to all of their families and colleagues.
Michael and Zaida were essential contributors to the fight against impunity for human rights abuses and the pursuit of truth in the context of armed conflict in the DRC. Their disappearances and deaths come at a time when freedom and access for human rights investigators is increasingly limited there.
The circumstances of the three deaths and related disappearances should be thoroughly and independently investigated in order to provide a clear record of events, help prevent future such circumstances, and bring perpetrators to justice. The groups of experts established for each UN Security Council sanctions program play a critical role in monitoring the integrity of these efforts.