After the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, the Democratic Republic
of Congo (DRC) (previously Zaire) absorbed more than one million
Rwandan refugees. Military and civilian populations lived together
in the camps along the border, where those responsible for committing
the genocide, known as genocidaires, were able to escape retribution
and carry out small-scale attacks into Rwanda (US Department of
State: Profile http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2823.htm). In
late 1996, Rwanda sent in troops to stem attacks from three groups.
The first were Hutu rebels who had congregated in the DRC after
the 1994 genocide, although many of them were not involved in
the events of 1994. The second group was known as the interahamwe,
those civilians who participated in the 1994 genocide and had
fled to the DRC to escape retribution by the Tutsi or prosecution.
The third group was ex-Far (Forces Armees Rwandaises) soldiers
and officials. FAR was the government in charge during the genocide.
Rwandan troops remained in 1997 to support Laurent Kabila in
his coup against ailing dictator Mobutu Sese Seko. This combination
successfully ousted Seko and established Kabila’s new regime.
However, once Kabila had gained power he ordered the Rwandan
government to leave. The Rwandan government, outraged, switched
alliances, supporting the anti-Kabila rebels known has Rassemblement
Congolais pours la Democratie (RCD). Rwanda now had two forces,
both the RPA and RCD-Goma, in eastern DRC. Uganda and Burundi
also threw their support in behind the RCD, creating an ad hoc
Great Lakes regional alliance (US Department of State: Profile
http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/2823.htm). Kabila was backed
by the Congolese army (FAC), the ex-FAR and interahamwe militias,
and countries such as Angola, Namibia, Chad and Zimbabwe who
became involved for various reasons of regional stability and
power (Country Indicators for Foreign Policy [CIFP]: Altaf p.
Presently, the RCD-Goma have taken control of the eastern half
of the country, leaving the Government forces in control of
the west, including the Kinshasa area. Within the rebel-controlled
areas however, the local militias, Congolese nationalists and
vigilantes, collectively known as the Mai-Mai, have been conducting
a campaign against the RCD forces (Human Rights Watch [HRW]:
Csete et. al June 2002). The Lusaka Peace Accords, signed in
July 1999, called for the disengagement of the forces, but no
sides followed the terms (HRW: Ceste et. el June 2002). In January
2001 Kabila was killed and his son, Joseph Kabila, assumed power,
and has made a strong push for peace. On April 19, 2002, the
MLC-Bemba (another anti-government group in the east) and Joseph
Kabila signed a peace agreement in Sun City, South Africa, which
isolated the RCD and called for a transitional government in
Following up on Sun City, representatives from the Kinshasa
and Kigali governments met in Pretoria South Africa in July,
under the auspices of South African Deputy President Jacob Zuma.
A deal was worked out which would require the two sides to submit
all information regarding the presence of interahamwe forces
residing in the DRC. The deal placed responsibility on Kabila’s
government to disarm and begin to repatriate the soldiers to
Rwanda for trial beginning 90 days after signature. Rwanda will
also be required to submit a plan for the withdrawal of all
forces from DRC territory, and to begin the withdrawal 45 days
after the disarmament has begun. Both sides have 90 days to
complete all actions (Associated Press [AP]: "Peace Agreement
Between Congo and Rwanda Ambitious and will Require UN Help"
July 23, 2002).
The deal then calls for an international force, most likely
the UN peacekeeping force, Mission de l´Organisation des
Nations Unies en Republique Democratique du Congo
(MONUC), already present in the area, to secure the border between
the two countries. South Africa has committed at least 1,500
combat troops to the region to assist the UN in demobilizing
the interahamwe (Sunday Times (Johannesburg): Ka’nkosi, Sechaba
4 August 2002).
The peace deal, however, is problematic on many levels. The
internal rebel groups, most significantly RCD-Goma, were not
present at the negotiations and have not agreed to a peace.
The leader of RCD-Goma, Adolphe Onusumba, has threatened that
he must be involved for peace to come to the region (BBC: "Warning
for DR Congo Peace Deal" 23 July 2002). Further, there
is the problem of incentives for disarmament for the interahamwe
fighters, who will face trails and jail time once back in Rwanda.
Within the rigid 90-day framework, it may become difficult to
find men who are hiding in the underdeveloped and heavily wooded
east, which would in turn give the Rwandans reason to maintain
a troop presence in DRC territory beyond the time limits of
Congolaises (FAC)- Congolese Army
The FAC is the army of Joseph Kabila’s government in Kinshasa.
Under Kabila they have become less of a humanitarian threat as
he searches for peace in the region. The role of FAC has recently
increased under the Pretoria Peace Accord to include disarming
and expelling the interahamwe forces currently residing in DRC
territory. The FAC is supported by the governments of Angola,
Zimbabwe, and Namibia.
Rassemblement Congolais pour la Democratie
– Goma (RCD-Goma)
RCD-Goma is the largest of the rebel groups in the east. It
is largely supported by the Rwandan government and contained
many Banyamulenge, the largest indigenous Tutsi group in the
Democratic Republic of Congo. They control much of the east,
including the North and South Kivu provinces, which they claim
to administer under Congolese law (HRW: Csete et. al June 2002).
However, the UN peacekeeping force (MONUC) and Human Rights
Watch have both accused RCD-Goma of grave human rights violations
in the areas they administer (IRIN: "RCD Guilty…"
23 May 2002). RCD-Goma suffers from a leadership crisis, with
no real unifying figure for the rebel movement, although Aldolphe
Onusumba currently claims leadership for the group.
Currently there is a mutiny of Banyamulenge, led by Captain
Patrick Masunzu, against the RCD-Goma leadership. Masunzu has
allied with local pro-Kinshasa militias and Banyamulenge groups
in the High Plateau region (IRIN: "RCD Rebel forces facing…"
25 June 2002). The damage to the RCD-Goma from the split is
two-fold. First, the military strength of RCD-Goma will be diminished
to a point where they may not be able to hold territory. Second,
the Rwandans will be left without the cover of Congolese figureheads
if they wish to maintain a presence in the country following
the withdrawal of forces. RCD-Goma walked out on the Sun City
negotiations and hence have no place in the new government.
According to some leaders they are seeking now to find their
place in the Pretoria framework because the recognized that
they must redefine their role from that of a rebel movement
to that of a political party if they wish to maintain power
in the east (IRIN: "RCD-Goma leaders in talks to determine
movement’s future" 1 August 2002). It is still unclear
how committed the local commanders are to abandoning their earlier
practices in favor of a coalition peace.
Rwandan Patriotic Army (RPA)
The Rwandan Patriotic Army (RPA) is the Rwandan government force
in the DRC, which currently numbers anywhere from 15,000 to
30,000 soldiers. Large numbers of Rwandan troops and equipment
have recently begun to enter the Bukavu region to fight the
Banyamulenge rebel leader, Patrick Masunzu, which has increased
the troop presence in DRC territory. The RPA also is the largest
funding source for the RCD-Goma rebel group.
The RPA claims that the Kinshasa government (Joseph Kabila)
controls 8o percent of ex-FAR and interahamwe forces in the
DRC and that attacks on Rwanda are based out of government strongholds
(allafrica.com: Cobb June 2002). Their presence in the country
is said to be defensive, and once the government controls the
rebels and helps to repatriate refugee Rwandans, they will exit
DRC. The UN claims a second motivation, however: that Rwanda,
which has no indigenous diamond resources, has begun to export
diamonds and coltan taken from occupied territories in DRC (UN
Security Council: Ba-N’Daw et. al. April, 2002).
The Mai-Mai are a collection of indigenous groups and militias
who oppose the mostly foreign rebel forces and the RCD. They
fight throughout the east, usually battling against the RCD
and RPA, although they will fight against government forces
as well depending on local alliances (The Gaurdian: Astill 24
July 2002). They have been linked to the interahamwe, although
since Joseph Kabila has come into power they have begun to distance
themselves from the group (IRC: Roberts June 2002). The Mai-Mai
have limited central command structure or leadership. Most are
local militias or simply young men who wish to benefit from
the conflict. MONUC estimates that there are anywhere from 20,000
to 30,000 Mai-Mai who are currently active in the Kivus (UNSC:
S/2002/341 5 April 2002). Indeterminate forces, or men who carry
weapons and do not speak Kinyarwanda (the national language
of Rwanda and the language of the RPA) are often identified
by locals as Mai-Mai. However, the Mai-Mai were present at the
Sun City talks and, while their leadership is scattered, they
are considered a legitimate rebel group.
The Banyamulenge are the largest ethnically Tutsi group living
inside the Democratic Republic of Congo. After a massacre of
Banyamulenge government soldiers in 1998 initiated by the Kinshasa
government, the majority of Banyamulenge soldiers allied themselves
with rebel groups in the east, specifically the Rwandan-backed
RCD-Goma (Council on Foreign Relations [CFR]: Great Lakes Policy
Forum Meeting Summary 11 April 2002). However, the Rwandan government
and RCD-Goma failed to provide protection to the Banyamulenge
homelands in Kivu, which were under constant attack by Mai-Mai,
ALiR and other rebel groups. Therefore they began to create
their own militias for protection (CFR: Great Lakes Policy Forum
Meeting Summary 11 April 2002).
From the beginning of 2002 a Banyamulenge commander within
the RCD-Goma, Captain Patrick Masunzu, has been leading a rebellion
of Banyamulenge troops in their High Plateau homeland. The Rwandans
have accused him of forming an alliance with the interahamwe
with the goal of perpetrating attacks on Rwanda (Global News
Wire: "New Congolese Alliance not a Threat to Rwanda"
11 July 2002). But highly placed sources refute this claim as
being based on biased evidence from within Rwanda.
Armee pour la Liberation du Rwanda
ALiR is made up predominantly of Rwandan Hutu forces fighting
against the RPA and RCD. The group is often referred to as interahamwe,
although a large percentage are not ex-FAR or genocidaires.
According to MONUC, there are between 8,000 and 16,000 ALIR
forces fighting in the DRC (UNSC: S/2000/241). Their stated
goal is to topple the current, Tutsi dominated, Rwandan government
and re-instate Hutu control in the country (UN Navy: Terrorist
Group Profiles http://library.nps.navy.mil/home/tgp/alir.htm).
Overall, ALiR is an anti-rebel force, often associated with
the Kinshasa government, and hence fights mostly against the
RCD-Goma and RPA troops. However, according to UN sources, ALiR
forces will ally with both RPA and RCD-Goma to facilitate the
exploitation of local mineral resources (HRW: Csete June 2002).
Rwanda has claimed that these groups are supported by the Kinshasa
government and that they are planning further attacks into Rwandan
territory (Missionary Service News Agency [MISNA]: "Rwanda
Announces…" 12 July 2002). It is this group which
is targeted for disarmament and extradition to Rwanda by the
Movement for the Liberation of Congo
MLC is a rebel group, led by Jean-Pierre Bemba, which opposes
the Kinshasa government. They receive most of their support
from Uganda in their conflict with the DRC government. In 2002
MLC was the main rebel group involved in the Sun City negotiations
and has signed a power sharing agreement with the Kabila government,
which both the RCD and the RPA refused to be a party to. Under
the accord, Bemba will become Prime Minister of DRC (HRW: Csete
June 2002). However, as of late July he has failed to leave
his rebel base and come to Kinshasa to begin planning the interim
government (BBC: Somerville 23 July 2002).
RCD-Kinshasa-Mouvement de Liberation
RCD-K-ML is a Uganda-backed rebel group. It controls little
territory in the east officially, mostly maintaining a presence
in the ethnically tense north-east, along the Ugandan border.
The group is said to be splintered along ethnic lines and therefore
less powerful as a negotiating force (HRW: World Report 2001).
Mission de l´Organisation des
Nations Unies en Republique Democratique du Congo
MONUC is the UN peacekeeping force that is comprised of about
3,600 total uniformed personnel, including 446 military observers,
3,173 troops and 14 civilian police. MONUC is supported by 533
international and 261 local civilian personnel who help to implement
and enforce the July 1999 cease-fire agreement. MONUC was established
under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, which generally limits
use of force to self-defense. However, MONUC has a limited mandate
to use force to protect its own facilities and civilians under
imminent threat of danger. MONUC will bear the responsibility
for monitoring the border between Rwanda and the DRC under Pretoria.
According to the MONUC commander, unless the number of troops
in the region is increased, they will be unable to fulfill this
mandate (AP: "Congo Peace Agreement May…" 23
The mission is based in Kinshasa, but spread throughout the
east. RCD-Goma forces have been expelling MONUC observers, whom
they claim are sabotaging their government (IRIN: "Rebels
Expel…" 23 June 2002). The rebels have also been
abusing the staff and commanders of the mission, forcing their
way into offices and threatening the staff (IRIN: "Rebels
Apologize for…" 19 June 2002). On August 4th a MONUC
reconnaissance team was held and then sent back at gun point
by unidentified soldiers as they tried to find a safe route
into the High Plateau region to aid the Banayamulenge (Reuters:
O’Reilly 4 August 2002).
Angola, Zimbabwe, Namibia, the Burundian rebel forces of Forces
pour la Defense de la Democratie (FDD) and Front for National
Liberation (FNL) have all maintained a presence in the country.
With the signing of the peace treaty in Angola in June 2002,
the Angolan government has affirmed that their troops will withdraw.
Domestic unrest in Zimbabwe has led that government to withdraw
some of its forces as well. Burundian rebel groups, however,
are still said to be active in the region.
Nature of Abuse
Starvation, Illness and Murder
The most widely accepted estimate of deaths in the DRC is that
2.5 million civilians have perished as a result of the conflict
from August 1998 to March 2001 (International Rescue Committee
[IRC]: Roberts p. 3). In four of the areas visited by IRC surveyors,
deaths outnumber births by two or three to one and one in eight
households has experienced a murder in the family during the
33 month period of the survey (2001). 60 percent of children
will die before their fifth birthday throughout the east (IRC:
Roberts p. 12). In one of the most violent provinces, Katanga,
75 percent of children born in 1999 and 2000 died (IRC: Roberts
Of the 2.5 million deaths, approximately 350,000 can be attributed
to murder, usually shooting, burning, stabbing or hacking (IRC:
Roberts p. 13). Disease and malnutrition are the main killers
in the region. However, there is a correlation between areas
of higher violence and instances of non-violent death (IRC:
Roberts p. 12). This can be attributed to the dangerous living
situation created by conflict for civilians. Farmers are forced
to flee during periods of fighting into the forest, reducing
food production to below subsistence levels (HRW: Csete June
2002). Trade and travel is limited because of the frequency
of attacks by armed raiders demonstrating their control of the
roads. The result is a near economic collapse and peoples’ inability
to buy foodstuffs, medicine, etc. Further, people are unable
to reach medical facilities in the case of emergency (HRW: Csete
June 2002). The conflict has isolated and cut off the population,
resulting in exorbitant war related casualties.
There have, however, been instances of extreme violence and
massacre as well. Moreover, the killers act with impunity. Even
though there is a limited system of justice set up in the east
the UN has noted that the absence of accountability is one of
the most dangerous aspects of the human rights situation in
eastern DRC (UN: Greenstock 28 July 2002). The Acting President
of Civil Society for South Kivu, Professor Gervais Chiralirwa,
has referred to this as the "culture of impunity and violence"
which was brought in by Rwanda and has existed in the DRC since
the war began (Personal Interview: Chiralirwa 26 June 2002).
14 May 2002
Approximately 163 killed
On May 14, 2002 a group of RCD-Goma soldiers and local police
officers took over the local radio station and incited the local
population to mutiny against the Rwandan troops and the RCD-Goma
forces who control the city. The population did not rise up
as the mutineers had expected, and the radio station was recaptured
without bloodshed within a few hours. However, a pending UN
High Commission on Human Rights report, accuses the RCD-Goma
of massacring at least 103 civilians and at least 60 police
officers and soldiers in the days following the unsuccessful
rebellion (IRIN: "DRC Rebel Group Guilty…" 17
Up to 1,000 killed
Following a rebellion within RCD-Goma, Rwandan forces entered
East Kivu to quell the mutineers. Close to a thousand civilians,
including a significant number of women and children were killed
in the ensuing fighting according to humanitarian organizations
in the region. Due to the instability of the area, MONUC was
unable to verify the claim (UN Wire: "Hundreds reportedly
Massacred…" 15 April 2002). Rwanda has continued
to send troops into the DRC to deal with the mutiny and there
is limited knowledge of their activities there because of the
12 June 2002
Up to 50 killed
Fighting in the northeastern town of Beni between competing
Ugandan backed rebel forces led to up to 50 unconfirmed deaths,
many civilians, as the battles progressed through the streets
and neighborhoods of the city (HRW: "Rebel Fighting Imperils…"
12 June 2001).
As military activities in eastern Congo have increased, so
too have the incidents of violence against women. Rape is used
as a weapon by all parties involved: women reported assaults
by RCD, RPA, Mai-Mai, ALiR and government forces. It is used
in a pre-meditated manner to force a population into submission
through the subjugation of the women or to punish communities
for supposed loyalties. But in some cases the act is simply
a random act of violence. Often times the rapists performed
acts of extreme violence as a part of the terror campaign, shooting
victims in the vagina, mutilating them with razor blades or
inserting chilies after the act. These actions are all undertaken
with total impunity; the court system does not try the soldiers
in rape cases (HRW: Csete June 2002). There is no clear estimate
on how many women have been affected since, due to cultural
inhibitions, few are willing to speak out, but in one territory
during a short period of time (between late 1999 and mid 2001)
2,500 to 3,000 women are estimated to have been raped (HRW:
Csete June 2002).
Motivation for prolonging the conflict lies in DRC’s vast mineral
wealth which is currently being exploited by the occupying and
rebel forces in eastern Congo. A UN Report by a panel of experts
identifies Rwanda and Uganda as being the main perpetrators
of the mineral "looting" of diamonds and Coltan on
a large scale, but the indigenous Mai-Mai are also using the
conflict for their own enrichment.
The report identifies a sudden increase in diamond and mineral
exports of Rwanda and Uganda since the invasion and occupation
of DRC. Ugandan diamond exports in 1997, before the occupation
of DRC, were at a volume of approximately 1,511.34 carats per
year. But in 1998, after they became involved in the conflict,
rough diamond exports skyrocketed to a volume of approximately
11,303.86 and have leveled off to a volume around 10,000 per
year since (UN: Ba-N’Daw et. al. April 2001).
Rwanda, too, has jumped from a low in 1998 of 166.07 carats
exported to 30, 491.22 carats in 2000 (UN: Baw-N’Daw et. al.
April 2001). These numbers, however, may not fully capture the
situation, reliable sources working within the region claim
that the UN report grossly underestimates the exploitation.
Further, the UN report documents the battle practices of the
combatants as related to the mining of the precious minerals.
Rwandan attacks consistently coincide with periods when Mai-Mai
are bagging their recently mined Coltan and a retreat will be
called once the planes have been loaded with the mineral. Rebel
forces will also fight battles in areas rich with mines versus
those with simply strategic value
Determination of Genocide
UN Definition of Genocide- Section II, Article c
The UN, under Article 2 of the Convention on Genocide, mandates
that there must be an intent to destroy, in part or in whole,
a national, ethnic, racial or religious group in order for the
crime to be considered genocide. In the DRC conflict overall,
this standard is not met. Most violence is either incidental
(disease, malnutrition, etc.) or it is directed at a non-specific
group (i.e. rape of women). There are, however, certain sub-conflicts
within the greater war where this standard would apply. The
most disturbing, is the battle on the High Plateau between Rwandan
and RCD-Goma forces and the Banyamulenge ethnic group. Reports
from sources in the field indicate that large numbers of civilians
may be dying as a result of the conflict and the Rwandan government
and rebels will not allow any international aid or observers
to reach the trapped people. Because of the large numbers of
Rwandan soldiers who have been brought in through Bukavu, there
is a high risk of retaliation against civilians for the mutiny.
The region is currently impenetrable to international observers
and must be considered as a current hot spot.
· Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, 1998,
2) Rape/Sexual Slavery
· Article 3 of the Geneva Convention of 1949 violations:
1) Violence to Life and Person: Murder, Mutilation, Cruel Treatment,
· Principle 18 of the 1989 UN Principles on the Effective
Prevention and Investigation of Extra-legal, Arbitrary and Summary
1) Punishment of perpetrators of extrajudicial killing
The massive human rights violation and the critical humanitarian
disaster in the Democratic Republic of Congo do not constitute
genocide. The proliferation of rebel groups and the shifting
alliances between the government forces within the region and
indigenous parties makes the conflict difficult to characterize
and a starting point for peace difficult to find. The widespread
rape of women and girls by all parties and the extrajudicial
killing of civilians, specifically by the RCD-Goma, are among
the most pressing issues. From within the larger conflict, however,
certain key conflict arise out of the situation which must be
The first conflict which must be monitored is the campaign
being carried out against the Banyamulenge in the east. As more
Rwandan soldiers enter the country to help with the tracking
down of genocidaires and other Hutu extremists, as per the Pretoria
Accord, their activities in this area must be carefully monitored.
The RPA and RCD-Goma have already shown a predisposition to
punish mutinying groups severely (see the Human Rights Watch
report on Kisangani) and their actions against the Banyamulenge
to date have followed this pattern.
Second, a conflict which will be addressed in Appendix I of
this report must be monitored. The conflict is taking pace in
the northeast, in the Ituri province, and involves two prominent
local ethnic groups: the Hema and the Lendu. The civilian toll
has been immense and international pressure, due to the remoteness
and danger involved in travelling through the area, has been
The ongoing peace process in the region, and the possible withdraw
of foreign troops, will change the face of the conflict. The
continued public accusations by Rwanda and DRC regarding non-compliance
with the Pretoria terms, however, shows the fragility of the
accord. President Kabilla has called for a continuing process
of talks encompassing not only foreign combatants but also indigenous
forces, saying that Sun City and Pretoria are stepping-stones
to a comprehensive deal (IRIN: "Comprehensive Accord to
Supercede…" 28 August 2002).
Altaf, Alia, Aoife Gibbons, Kjell Anderson and Nicolas Leroy.
"Democratic Republic of Congo: A Risk Assessment."
CIFP and NPSIA, Carleton University. 1 February 2002. <http://www.carleton.ca/cifp/docs/brief_congo.pdf>
Associated Press. "Congo Peace Agreement May Involve U.N."
23 July 2002.
Associated Press. "Peace Agreement Between Congo and Rwandan
Ambitious and Will Require U.N. Help." 23 July 2002.
Astill, James. The Guardian. "Congo: an Everyday Story
of Horror and Grief." 24 July 2002.
Ba-N’Daw, Safiatou, Francois Ekoko, Mel Holt, Henri Maire,
and Moustapha Tall. "Report of the Panel of Experts on
the Illegal Exploitation of Natural Resources and Other forma
of Wealth of the Democratic Republic of Congo." UN Security
Council. 12 April 2002.
Baldo, Suliman. "Testimony before the House Committee
on International Relations." 17 May 2001.
BBC. Somerville, Keith. "DR Congo Awash With Rebels."
23 July 2002.
BBC. "Warning for DR Congo Peace Deal." 23 July 2002.
Chiralirwa, Gervais. Personal Interview. 26 June 2002.
Cobb,CharlesJr. ‘Talk Tough’ to Kinshasa, Says Kagame
Envoy." 21 June 2002. <http://www.allafrica.com/stories/200206210002.html>
Csete, Joanne and Juliane Kippenberg. "THE WAR WITHIN
THE WAR: Sexual Violence Against Women and Girls in Eastern
Congo." Human Rights Watch, June 2002. <http://www.hrw.org/reports/2002/drc/>
Greenstock, Jeremy. Speech. "Great Lakes Report."
United Nations. 28 July 2002.
Human Rights Watch. World Report 2001. "The Democratic
Republic of Congo." <http://www.hrw.org/wr2k1/africa/drc.html>
Human Rights Watch. "Congo: Rebel Fighting Imperils Beni
Residents." 12 June 2002.
IRIN. "Comprehensive Accord to Supercede Sun City, Kinshasa
Says." 28 August 2002.
IRIN. "RCD-Goma leaders in talks to determine movement’s
future." 1 August 2002.
IRIN. "RCD Guilty of "Grave Violations of Human Rights."
23 May 2002. <http://www.allafrica.com/stories/printable/200205230342.html>
IRIN."RCD rebel forces facing mutiny again." 25 June
IRIN. "Rebels Appologize to UN for Break-in." 19
June 2002. <http://allafrica.com/stories/200206190248.html>
IRIN. "Rebel Group Guilty of Kisangani Massacres."
17 July 2002.
IRIN. "Rebels Expel three UN Officials From East."
23 June 2002. <http://allafrica.com/stories/200206030401.html>
Ka’Nkosi, Sechaba. The Sunday Times (Johannesburg). "SA
Combat Troops Prepare for Congo." 4 August 2002.
MISNA. "Rwanda Announces ‘FAR’ Offensive and No Intention
to Leave DR-Congo." 12 July 2002.
Reuters. O’Reilly, Finbarr. "U.N. Team Turned Back at
Gunpoint in Eastern Congo." 4 August 2002.
Roberts, Les. "Mortality in Eastern Democratic Republic
of Congo." International Rescue Group. 2001.
Roberts, Les. Telephone Interview. 25 June 2002.
United States Department of State. Background Note: Democratic
Republic of Congo
United States Navy. Terrorist Group Profiles: Army for the Liberation
of Rwanda (ALIR). <http://library.nps.navy.mil/home/tgp/alir.htm>
United Nations. Security Council. S/2000/241. 5 April 2002.
UN Wire. "Hundreds Reportedly Killed During Intense Fighting."
15 April 2002.
The UN Special Representative to the DRC, Amos Namanga Ngongi,
has claimed that hundreds have died and 15,000 have been displaced
in the northeastern Ituri province since the beginning of the
year (UN Wire: "U.N. Special Representative Warns…"
7 February 2002). The conflict involves two ethnic groups, the
Hema and the Lendu, as well as Ugandan backed rebels.
The fighting stems from arguments of control of resources,
mostly a gold mine owned by the Hema, control over the lucrative
customs checkpoints between Uganda and the DRC and also a land
dispute between the two ethnic groups. Uganda has been accused
of training both sides in the fight to encourage instability
in the region, although President Musevini of Uganda has recently
declared a neutral stance. High level source report that Musevini
may have lost control of the Ugandan and Ugandan supported rebel
forces in Ituri due to loose command structure and an offensive
being launched against the rebel Lord’s Resistance Army in the
Due to a lack of international presence in the region, no numbers
or specific instances can be confirmed.
August 9, 2002
At least 110 killed
On August 9 the Hema militia, led by a man named Thomas Lubanga
and aided by elements of the Ugandan Army, laid siege to the
city of Bunia in the northeastern Ituri province. At least 110
civilians were killed in the violence which targeted non-Hema
ethnic groups (BBC: "Ethnic massacre claim in DR Congo
11 June 2002). Local sources claim that certain neighborhoods
were surrounded and the inhabitants told that all non-Ituri
natives (i.e. non-Hema) would be killed. Official numbers of
dead and injured are unavailable as much of the city is still
too dangerous to travel in.
January 19, 2001
Fighting between Hema and Lendu inside the city led to the deaths
of at least 150 civilians who were targeted because of their
ethnicity. A Lendu militia attacked the Ugandan controlled airport
to disable a helicopter which was used in raid against their
group. When the assault was repelled, they moved to the nearby
Hema neighborhoods to attack Hema civilians. Later that day
the Hema militia carried out reprisal attacks against Lendu
civilians in a different part of the city (HRW: "Massacres
in Ugandan…" 22 January 2001).
BBC. "Ethnic massacre claim in DR Congo." July 11,
Human Rights Watch. "Congo: Massacres in Ugandan Controlled
Areas." January 22, 2001.
IRIN. "Scores Die in Two Days of Fighting in Bunia."
July 11, 2002.
UN Wire. "U.N. Special Representative warns of Violent
Ethnic Clashes." February 7, 2002.
Main Belligerents in the Democratic
Republic of Congo
||Sponsoring State/ Allies
||Areas of Control
|Forces Armees Congolaises
||Joseph Kabila’s Kinshasa based government troops
||Allies: ex-FAR and interahamwe, Angola, Chad, Namibia,
|Western half of DRC
|Rassemblement Congolais pour la Democratie – Goma (RCD-Goma)
||Largest anti-Kinshasa rebel group
||Congolese and Rwandan
||Most of North and South Kivu, including Kisangani
|Rassemblement Congolais pour la Democratie- Mouvement
de Liberation (RCD-K-ML)
||Anti-Kinshasa rebel group
||Congolese and Ugandan
||Ituri province (questionable)
|Rwandan Patriotic Army (RPA)
||Government forces of Rwanda, Kigali based
||Officially none (located in the east)
||Collection of local anti-Kinshasa rebel groups
||Ex-FAR and interahamwe, FAC
||Officially none (located in the east)
|Movement for the Liberation of Congo (MLC)
||Anti-Kinshasa rebel group, became a part of the government
at Sun City
|Armee pour la Liberation du Rwanda (ALiR)
||Ex-FAR, interahamwe and other Rwandans
||Mutinied against RCD-Goma
||UN Peace-Keeping Force