UN News Centre reportsDR Congo: UN mission chief deplores atrocities committed by armed group in eastern province
Special Representative and head of the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the DRC (MONUSCO) Martin Kobler. Photo MONUSCO/Myriam Asmani
26 October 2013 – Strongly condemning the “unimaginable atrocities” committed by the Mayi-Mayi Cheka armed group during a spate of recent attacks in which some 34 civilian were brutally killed in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the top United Nations official in the country today warned against impunity for such acts and urged the group to immediately lay down its weapons.
That is a total waste of time. They will not lay down weapons and thus should now be added to the list of groups that will receive a bit of attention from the Intervention ( Africa ) Brigade, although in all fairness to MONUSCO they probably already have been added. I guess their date with the
Brigade death is now a scheduling issue.
"These atrocities are unimaginable and are contradicting the values of humanity. This must have consequences. There cannot be impunity for such atrocious acts,” declared Martin Kobler, head of the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the DRC, known as MONUSCO.The key to taking out these guys will be intelligence and that capability is going to be enhanced soon with the arrival of the first in a fleet of aerial surveillance drones.
" KINSHASA - The first in a fleet of United Nations drones will begin monitoring rebel activity on the borders of the Democratic Republic of Congo next month, a UN commander said mid-this week.
General Carlos Alberto Dos Santos Cruz, commander with the UN peacekeeping brigade in the country, said the unarmed drone would be airborne by the last week of November.
"The initial base to operate the aerial vehicle will be in Goma, and for five months we are going to increase the equipment," he said.
The brigade hopes to have surveillance 24 hours a day by "March or April", he added."
Hopefully there will have been a resolution to the M23 issue by the end of November.
In a press release issued this morning, the Mission and its chief strongly condemned multiple attacks over the past few weeks perpetrated by elements of the Mayi-Mayi Cheka armed group, in some instances jointly with Raïa Mutomboki combatants, in several villages of the territory of Masisi in the restive eastern Congolese province of North-Kivu.
According to MONUSCO, at least 34 civilians, including 20 children, were brutally killed by the Mayi-Mayi Cheka elements in the different attacks in the eastern region.
The Mai Mai Cheka's elimination along with other Mai Mai groups will send a message that Kinshasa is taking the security of the population of the Kivus region seriously, I am firmly of the opinion that along with the high tech drones smart weapons should also be made available to deal with armed groups operating in the eastern DR Congo.
“I urge the Mayi-Mayi Cheka to immediately abandon weapons and to stop manipulating different ethnic groups for personal interest", said Mr. Kobler.
The Mission says that its investigations have helped to confirm extra-judicial mass executions of civilians, particularly children aged between 6 months and 17 years, “as well as other gross human rights violations which may constitute crimes under international law, including crimes against humanity, committed during these different attacks.”
Extrajudicial killings can of course cut both ways, when you commit atrocities on this scale I think that is a point worth remembering.
In one example, MONUSCO notes that on 27 September, Mayi-Mayi Cheka elements, in collaboration with Raïa Mutomboki combatants, attacked Lwibo village, killing at least 16 people, including 14 children, and burning and destroying 185 houses.