Rwanda asks for U.N. report on Congo sanctions to be dismissed
UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - Rwanda asked a U.N. Security Council sanctions committee on Friday to dismiss a report that says the defeated M23 rebels in Democratic Republic of Congo are still recruiting fighters in Rwanda and Congolese troops are involved in rights abuses.Rwanda can be counted on to never give up denying the undeniable.
The confidential report by independent experts, seen by Reuters last month, also said it had "credible information that sanctioned M23 leaders are moving freely in Uganda and that M23 continued to recruit in Rwanda."
That is hardly a secret. Given that they crossed into Uganda after being defeated and have been given political asylum, the other obvious point being that M23 was always the creation and creature of Uganda and Rwanda.
The experts monitor U.N. sanctions on Congo and report on violations to a U.N. Security Council sanctions committee, which is made up of all 15 council members. The committee was meeting on Friday afternoon to discuss the experts' report.
"Considering the many flaws indicated in this document, the U.N. Sanctions Committee should consider dismissing the Group of Experts' final report," Rwanda said in a seven-page document submitted to the committee, which was obtained by Reuters.Rwandan denials are largely ignored by all. That is the problem with constant lying, the problem is that the allegations against Rwanda are always backed up by evidence that would be acceptable in any democratic jurisdictions judicial system.
Rwanda, which just started its second year of a two-year term on the Security Council, said the allegations against it in the report "have no relevance in the current circumstances," and could undermine regional efforts to bring peace to the volatile, resource-rich eastern Congo.
I would have thought that allegations that M23 was actively recruiting in Rwanda might have a lot relevance in the current circumstances
"The Sanctions Committee should thus consider removing these allegations against Rwanda in the final report," it said.
The U.N. experts have repeatedly accused neighboring Rwanda of backing the 20-month rebellion by M23 in eastern Congo, a claim the Rwandan government has fiercely rejected. The U.N. Security Council has blacklisted M23.
Congolese troops and the U.N. peacekeeping mission - which includes a unique Intervention Brigade mandated to eliminate armed groups - defeated M23 in November and the group signed a peace deal with the Congo government last month.
But Martin Kobler, the top U.N. official in the Democratic Republic of Congo, warned on Monday that there were "credible reports of emerging M23 activities in Ituri in northeastern Congo."
" The Group used evidentiary standards recommended by the report of the Informal Working Group of the Security Council on General Issues of Sanctions (S/2006/997). The Group based its findings on documents and, wherever possible, first-hand, on-site observations by the experts themselves. Otherwise, the Group corroborated information by using at least three independent and reliable sources. "That is a high standard and show the correct triangulation technique used by intelligence gathering agencies, Pablo at Kiwipolitico explains:
On top of the rumors and reports, M23 have never been a very smart organisation when it come to the use of social media, so I have kept an eye on the obvious sites, their main website following M23's defeat went off line.
It is now dead. However the website had a Facebook page and it has become increasingly active over the last few weeks, usually the content is a mixture of 13 year old school boy smut running alongside article that had been published on the official site. The page is now covering political developments in the DR Congo.... how is this for interesting ?
" The chameleon is a great teacher. Watch it .
When he takes a direction , he never turned his head . Make like him. Have a goal in life and that nothing distracts you . Chameleon does not turn his head but his eyes he turns .
He looks up, down . That means learn . Do not think you 're the only one on earth.
When it happens in one place, it takes the color of the place . This is not hypocrisy. It is first of tolerance and then the etiquette. Face each other does not help. Nothing has ever been built in the fight. Always try to understand the other. If we exist , we must admit that the other exists .
If the chameleon advance , it throws one foot. It balance ? This is called prudence in walking.
To move, it hangs its tail and if his feet sink , it remains suspended. This is called secure his rear . Do not be reckless.
When the chameleon sees a prey, he does not rush it but he sends his tongue. If language can bring him , she brings him . Otherwise , it still has the possibility of resuming his tongue and avoid evil. Go slow in everything you do."
M23 is one of dozens of rebel groups in eastern Congo. Millions of people have died from violence, disease and hunger in the region since the 1990s as armed groups have fought for control of the area's vast deposits of gold, diamonds, copper, cobalt and uranium.
In the document given to the committee, Rwanda said: "A clear pattern has been established whereby the Group of Experts seeks to entrench a 'blame Rwanda' narrative by endorsing any account that incriminates the government of Rwanda and dismissing those that exculpate or vindicate it."
"It should be made clear that the use of a U.N.-sanctioned mechanism to launch deliberate attacks against a U.N. member state through grave but unsubstantiated and damaging accusations without any credible evidence to back them are unacceptable," it said.
Uganda also wrote to the Security Council committee to deny accusations in the report that sanctioned M23 leaders were moving freely within Uganda and that most of the gold produced in Congo was traded in Uganda.
"It is difficult to understand why the group (of experts) came up with falsehoods and misconceived conclusions against Uganda in this way," Uganda's minister of state for international affairs, Okello Henry Oryem, wrote in a letter to the committee, also obtained by Reuters.
"The report in our view is obstructive in the ongoing efforts ... in bringing peace and stability to Democratic Republic of Congo," Oryem wrote.
Rwanda and Uganda both argued that they had cooperated with the U.N. experts and that information they had provided to the group had been ignored.
" On 6 November, the Group wrote to the Government of Rwanda to clarify this event; however, as of the writing of this report, the Group has not received a reply."
Several council diplomats said neither of Rwanda's requests to the committee were likely be successful. The committee works on the basis of consensus, which means it would only take an objection from one country to block Rwanda's requests.
Rwanda could go on to demand that the council place a hold on the report, which could relegate it to a kind of limbo and indefinitely prevent its official publication.
Theoretically, the Security Council could vote to publish it, but that would be unlikely if Kigali found support from council members like Russia and China, which have in the past delayed or prevented publication of U.N. experts' reports on other issues and repeatedly criticized U.N. experts' broad mandates.
In August, Rwanda blocked a joint U.S.-French proposal for the U.N. Sanctions Committee to impose U.N. sanctions on two senior commanders in the M23 rebel group in eastern Congo, arguing that the evidence against the men was weak.
Rwanda has repeatedly intervened in Congo, saying it had to hunt down the Hutu militia which fled after the 1994 Rwandan genocide. Rwanda and Congo have fought two wars over the past two decades in eastern Congo.