In September 2008, the UN issued a questionnaire to various countries to collect information about the legal framework for violence against women under which they operate, as well as the policies, services, National Action Plan, and prevention/awareness strategies they have developed. The response of about 200 countries is now accessible in a database.
For example, Article 15 of the DRC’s constitution states that sexual violence with the intention of destabilizing or dismantling and making an entire people disappear is a crime against humanity.
With regards to sexual violence and the criminal justice system, Law No. 06/019 requires cases to be dealt with within three months. Closed hearings are to be provided, and requires that the honour and credibility of the sexual violence survivor may under no circumstances be inferred from their previous or later behaviour. However, the marital rape exemption was retained in the 2006 amendments to the Penal Code.