Congo Watch: DRC: Rwandan rebels abuse Congolese civilians - UN report

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

DRC: Rwandan rebels abuse Congolese civilians - UN report

Rwandan Hutu rebels based in eastern Congo are responsible for hundreds of summary executions, rapes, beatings and hostage-taking of Congolese civilians in the territory of Walungu, South Kivu Province, the UN Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo, MONUC, said on Wednesday in a report documenting the human rights violations.

"The 1,724 accusations of abuse are essentially against two groups of Rwandan combatants," Fernando Castanon, the head of the MONUC section of human rights, said.

He said one group is the Rwandais forces democratiques pour la liberation du Rwanda (FDLR) while the other one, known as the Rastas, consists of Rwandan Hutus and some Congolese.

The report is based on 405 confidential interviews taken from 12 to 29 April by a multidisciplinary team from MONUC. The alleged abuses took place from June 2004 to April 2005. Full Report IRIN, 19 May 2005
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UN mediates in aftermath of conflict in Mbuji-Mayi

The UN is mediating among political parties in Mbuji-Mayi, capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo's Kasai Oriental Province, following last week's violence.

The UN Mission in the country, known as MONUC, sent additional peacekeepers to the city on Friday to beef up security.

"MONUC finds it necessary to have a stronger presence to help diffuse this crisis as well as to ensure against similar crises in the future," Mamady Kouyate, the head of the mediation effort for MONUC, told IRIN on Monday.

Violent demonstrations last week left at least two people dead and 12 others wounded. The offices of all the main political parties in the province were ransacked and burned. Full Story IRIN, 24 May 2005.

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