Three killed in DRC rebel attack
Goma – Three people were killed in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo in a machete attack blamed on rebels from neighbouring Uganda, local authorities said Tuesday.
The attack, which was repelled by the army, took place in the restive North Kivu province, where rebels from the Allied Democratic Forces and National Army for the Liberation of Uganda (ADF-NALU) have been accused of hacking scores of civilians to death since October.
The rebels launched their attack on the village of Eringeti, around 40 kilometres (25 miles) from the city of Beni, late Monday, tribal elder Desire Boroso told AFP.
“They killed three people Ä two women and a child – with a machete, and seriously injured three others,” Boroso said by telephone.
A local security source confirmed the death toll.
The mainly Muslim ADF-NALU rebels have been hiding in the mountains that straddle the border between DRC and Uganda since being driven out of their homeland in 1995.
The Congolese army and UN forces launched an offensive in January to try flush them out of the region.
Suspected Ugandan rebels killed as many as 100 people in a spate of attacks in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo in recent days, DRC officials said on Monday, a sign of how armed groups continue to pose a security threat to the country.
From Thursday through Saturday, machete- and gun-wielding attackers—some dressed in DRC army uniforms—targeted several villages near the gold-trading town of Beni, about 150 miles north of the regional capital, Goma, said Feller Lutahichirwa, the North Kivu deputy provincial governor. The attackers slit the throats of most of the victims, including women and children, aid and military officials said.
DRC officials and aid agencies blamed this and other recent attacks on the Allied Democratic Forces, a secretive rebel group founded by a Ugandan radical Islamist sect in the 1990s.
The ADF attacks appeared to target civilians the rebels suspect are providing information about rebel movements to government and United Nations troops.
Wall Street Journal
The Hague – The International Criminal Court on Monday upheld Congolese warlord Thomas Lubanga’s conviction for using child soldiers, handing down its first-ever appeals verdict.
“The Appeals Chamber by majority confirms the conviction decision and rejects the appeal,” presiding judge Erkki Kourula said at The Hague-based court.
DRC closes camps for displaced people
Authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s volatile North Kivu province on Wednesday moved to close down camps for displaced people for security reasons, arguing that arms were hidden inside.
The sudden move, which will affect about 60 camps in the eastern province according to the UN refugee agency, caught humanitarian officials by surprise.
The provincial governor, Julien Paluku, on Tuesday ordered the closure of the Kiwanja camp – north of the provincial capital Goma and home to about 2 300 displaced people – “and the order was carried out today”, said Edgard Paluku, one of the governor’s spokesmen.
The camps “constituted pockets of insecurity and a hiding place for arms”, he told AFP.
“All the other camps will be closed at the earliest opportunity,” the spokesman added.
The restive east has long been a theatre of violent attacks and killings and a string of rights abuses including rape and kidnapping.
Rebels from the Allied Democratic Forces and National Army for the Liberation of Uganda (ADF-NALU) have been accused of hacking scores of civilians to death in Nord Kivu since October.