Rights in Exile Programme

Refugee Legal Aid Information for Lawyers Representing Refugees Globally


Click here to see the host countries of refugees originating from the Democratic Republic of Congo. 

Mr Ben Rawlence

Email: benrawlenceatgmail [dot] com

Mr Rawlence is a Country of Origin expert on the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Eritea, and Somalia. He was formerly a Senior Researcher for Human Rights Watch for the Horn of Afric 2008-2013. He also traveled in eastern DRC in 2007 adn wrote a book 'Radio Congo: Signals of Hope from Africa’s Deadliest War'. He is familiar with issues in DRC up to 2008 and with the Horn of Africa up to 2014. 

Mr Jason Stearns 

Email: jason [dot] stearnsatyale [dot] edu

Jason Stearns has been working on the DR Congo since 2001. He first traveled to the Eastern Congo to volunteer for a human rights organization in Bukavu, after which he joined the UN peacekeeping mission for two years. He has also worked for the International Crisis Group, as the coordinator for the UN Group of Experts on the DR Congo, as well as for several other non-profit organizations. In 2011 he founded the Usalama Project, a non-profit research group that carries out in-depth investigative work on the Congo. He is the author of numerous articles and reports on the country, including the 2011 book Dancing in the Glory of Monsters: the Collapse of the Congo and the Great War of Africa.

Dr Virginie Tallio

Email: Virginie [dot] Christine [dot] Tallioatiscte [dot] pt 

Dr Tallio has seven years of experience researching the Democratic Republic of Congo-Angola border and Angola providing expert testimonies, particularly on health-related claims. She received a PhD in Ethnology and Social Anthropology in 2007 at the École des hautes études en sciences sociales in Paris. She worked from August 2006 to February 2009 as a research fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, in Halle/Saale, Germany. She was part of the Max Planck Fellow Group “Law, Organization, Science and Technology” and worked on the project “Biomedicine in Africa”. Her personal research concerned “Governing bodies. The reconstruction of the health system in Angola”. Since May 2009, she has been a researcher at the Centro de Estudos Internacionais – Instituto Universitário de Lisboa (CEI-IUL), Portugal. She pursues her research on health, humanitarianism, the corporate social responsibility projects and methods in anthropology, especially in sensitive contexts. In addition, she teaches about “Saúde global em África. Entre saúde pública e ajuda humanitaria”, and is the coordinator of the “Seminar of African studies”. She holds a Master’s degree in Economic Demography of Developing Countries from the Institut d’Études Politiques de Paris.

Dr Thomas Turner

Email tommyagainatyahoo [dot] com

Dr Turner is a Country Specialist for the DRC for Amnesty International USA.  He has experience writing expert affidavits and has testified orally several times in asylum cases. He has completed field research in the region, and has taught and worked at its universities. He has written extensively on the DRC, completing various books and articles focusing on the country, its history, relations and conflict.

Dr Harry Verhoeven

Email: hv89atgeorgetown [dot] edu

Prof Harry Verhoeven teaches at the School of Foreign Service in Qatar, Georgetown University. Prof Verhoeven completed a doctorate at the University of Oxford, where he was a postdoctoral fellow from 2012 to 2014 and a Junior Research Fellow at Wolfson College from 2013 to 2014. His research focuses on conflict, development and the environment the Horn of Africa and the Great Lakes Region, including the Democratic Republic of Congo. He has published on hydropolitics, state-building and conflict in country and the region.  His research covers areas such as emerging powers, humanitarian intervention/responsibility to protect, state building, post-liberation movements, armed conflict and climate change and water in Africa. Outside academia he has worked in Congo with the Belgian government. A list of his publications can be found here: https://qatar.sfs.georgetown.edu/profile/harry-verhoeven.

Laura Young, JD, MPH

Email: lyoungatprorightsconsulting [dot] com

Laura is a US-trained human rights lawyer based in Nairobi, Kenya who works across sub-Saharan Africa as a consultant on governance and human rights for USAID, the UN, governments, and international NGOs. Laura has published numerous articles and reports focused on conflict dynamics, gender, minority rights, transitional justice, migration, health, and other human rights issues in the African context. Laura has provided expert input for immigration and asylum cases in both the US and UK, focused on LGBT, FGM/C, domestic violence, trafficking, access to health services (including mental health and HIV), ex-combatants, ethnic minorities, disability access, police protection, and other key issues.

Mr Chrispin Mvano

Email: baumamvanoatgmail [dot] com

Chrispin Mvano is an investigative journalist and researcher. With expertise in refugee and peace and security related issues, Chrispin possesses an unparalleled depth of current knowledge about the myriad of illegal armed groups that operate in eastern Congo. Originally from Masisi, Chrispin now lives with his family in Goma. He speaks French, Kiswahili, Kinyarwanda, Lingala, Kihunde, Mashi and some English. Chrispin works particularly in North and South Kivu, but with extensive contacts around Congo he has also worked in other provinces such as Kinshasa, Kongo Central, Bas-Uele, Haut-Uele and Ituri.

Reports, Commentaries and relevant Documents.