Sunday, May 02, 2010
Congo / United Nations
UN Investigates DR Congo Massacre
Agency reports on AlJazeera.net, May 2, 2010
"The United Nations has started investigating reports of the killing of about 100 Congolese in an attack by Uganda's Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) rebels in February. John Holmes, the senior UN humanitarian official, spoke of the alleged massacre in Kpanga on Saturday as he visited the region, where the armed group has forced about 300,000 people from their homes. The attack is the latest in a string of massacres in Democratic Republic of Congo's remote northeast. 'We've seen again massacres, rapes, acts of unimaginable brutality, which are continuing,' Holmes said in Nyangara, a town in Orientale province affected by LRA attacks. 'We heard today that there was a very bad massacre in the area where we were in December,' he said. 'And another massacre recently in February with perhaps another 100 people again.'
Human Rights Watch said last month the LRA had killed 321 people in a previously unreported massacre in December. DR Congo's government initially denied the massacre took place, but a local government official has since confirmed the killings but put the toll lower, at 188 people. ... The violence comes as Joseph Kabila, the president of DR Congo, pushes for UN peacekeepers to begin withdrawing from the country bye the 50th anniversary of Congo's independence on June 30. But Holmes warned that pulling out troops with the mission, known as Monuc, would damage the UN's ability to provide aid and help protect civilians. [...]"