BRIEFING

12 – 18 December 2012

DOWNLOAD PDF

EDITORIAL

In Kampala, the only progress in the talks between the DR Congo Government and the M23 rebels was the agreement signed yesterday, 18 December, on the rules of procedure of the discussions to come.

On the ground, the residents of Goma live in fear of a new attack on the city. The M23 rebels are still close, and Rwandan soldiers have crossed the border; the Rwandans claim they want to chase the FDLR, who are reported to mass troops in Masisi territory.

In his annual State of the Nation before parliament, President Kabila called the crisis a “war of aggression by Rwanda”. US President Obama urged his Rwandan counterpart Kagame to end all assistance for rebel groups in the DRC.

While in the north of North Kivu province over 100 Mai-Mai surrendered to the Congolese army, in the neighbouring territory of Mambasa in Ituri in one week’s time the army recaptured the gold-rich Pangoy area from Morgan’s Mai-Mai and were chased again by 200 heavily armed FARDC deserters from North Kivu.

In the Central African Republic, the new rebel coalition moved up and also took the northeastern towns of Bamingui and Bria, a diamond-mining hub. Chadian troops crossed the border to fight them.

The International Criminal Court in The Hague acquitted former Congolese militia leader Mathieu Ngudjolo of war crimes and crimes against humanity, saying prosecutors failed to prove his commanding role in the murder of 200 villagers in a 2003 attack in Ituri.

A Belgian court opened the way for a trial against Belgians accused of complicity in the 1961 killing of Congo’s first Prime Minister, Patrice Lumumba.

IPIS News

There will be no IPIS Briefing in the following two weeks.Arms Trade and Security in the Great Lakes Region

Recent news on conflict, security and arms trade across the Great Lakes Region. 

UN Regional Office for Central Africa (UNOCA) on strategy against LRA

UN and African Union to seek increased funding for strategy against the Lord’s Resistance Army | 18th December 2012 | UN News Centre

Mobiliser des ressources à l’appui du programme relatif à la LRA, tâche la plus urgente du BRENUAC | 18th December 2012 | UN News Centre

Activities of Lord’s Resistance Army Top Concerns as Secretary-General’s Special Representative in Central Africa Briefs Security Council | 18th December 2012 | UN Security Council | Reliefweb

Conseil de sécurité : le Représentant spécial du Secrétaire général pour l’Afrique centrale constate une amélioration de la situation malgré des défis persistants | 18th December 2012 | UN Security Council | Reliefweb

The United Nations and African Union (AU) will seek increased funding early next year for a strategy against the armed group known as the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) and its impact on communities in Central Africa, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative and head of the UN Regional Office for Central Africa (UNOCA), Abou Moussa, told the Security Council.

Report of the Secretary-General on the activities of the United Nations Regional Office for Central Africa and on areas affected by the Lord’s Resistance Army [S/2012/923] | 13th December 2012 | UN Security Council | Reliefweb

Rapport du Secrétaire général sur les activités du Bureau régional des Nations Unies pour l’Afrique centrale et les zones où sévit l’Armée de résistance du Seigneur (S/2012/923) | 13th December 2012 | UN Security Council | Reliefweb

UNOCA report covering the period June-December 2012.

DRC 

M23 crisis in North Kivu

Kampala peace talks

Des concertations mais toujours pas de négociation directe entre Kinshasa et le M23 | 12th December 2012 | RFI | allAfrica

Kinshasa évite de « mélanger les interlocuteurs », le M23 discute de « gouvernance » | 13th December 2012 | Le Potentiel | allAfrica

Pourparlers de Kampala – Le M23 veut imposer sa loi à Kinshasa | 13th December 2012 | RFI | allAfrica

DR Congo officials and M23 rebels locked in talks | 14th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

RDC : rebelles du M23 et gouvernement congolais tentent de fixer l’agenda de négociations de paix | 14th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

DRC Govt, M23 in Closed-Door Talks | 14th December 2012 | The New Times | allAfrica

DR Congo’s M23 rebels and government delegates are locked in negotiations to agree an agenda for peace talks, a Ugandan official said Friday.

“They have been meeting behind closed doors to agree on rules of procedure and the agenda,” said Paddy Ankunda, a spokesman for the Ugandan defence ministry, which is mediating the talks in Kampala.

Kampala : report de la plénière aux pourparlers entre le Gouvernement et le M23 | 15th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

Ebauche de négociations à Kampala entre le gouvernement congolais et le M23 | 17th December 2012 | RFI | allAfrica

Talks in Kampala between the DRC government and the M23 rebels have been extended until 31 December. Discussions concern both the agenda and the rules of procedure. The agenda will set out two points: the evaluation of the March 23 agreements signed in 2009 with the rebels of the CNDP, and the second item is called “All elements relating to the security and the socio-economic management of the country”. The Ugandan mediators suggest the Government to accept the second point, demanded by the rebels, in exchange for a rule saying that any solution must respect the Constitution.

Les pourparlers intercongolais piétinent | 17th December 2012 | BBC Afrique

La fin des négociations Kinshasa – Le M23 annoncée pour le 31 décembre | 17th December 2012 | Le Potentiel | allAfrica

DRC, M23 Talks Extended Till End of Year | 18th December 2012 | The New Times | allAfrica

M23-Kinshasa Talks Get $500,000 Financial Boost | 17th December 2012 | News of Rwanda | allAfrica

The Howard G. Buffett Foundation, linked to American billionaire Warren Buffett, has pledged US$500,000 to facilitate ongoing negotiations between the DRC government and M23 rebels in Uganda, it was announced on Monday.

Congolese Govt, M23 Rebels Hold Closed-Door Talks | 18th December 2012 | The New Vision | allAfrica

Le M23 réclame désormais l’administration de Goma – L’ombre de l’échec continue à planer sur les discussions de Kampala | 18th December 2012 | Le Potentiel | allAfrica

Kampala : le gouvernement et le M23 ont adopté le règlement intérieur du dialogue | 18th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

The Congolese Government and the rebels of the movement of March 23 (M23) adopted and signed the rules of procedure of the negotiations in Kampala, Uganda Tuesday 18 December. The document includes twenty-two articles laying down the rules of the game and the terms of the discussions for the duration of the dialog. These rules, signed by Raymond Tshibanda on behalf of the Congolese Governement and by François Rucogoza for M23, insist that the dialogue do not prejudice the constitution of the DRC, while finding solutions to the conflict in the East.

Kabila’s State of the Nation

Joseph Kabila : « La guerre dans l’Est a pour objectif de justifier la balkanisation de la RDC » | 15th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

The President of the DRC, Joseph Kabila, Saturday 15 December gave his annual address on the State of the Nation to a joint session of parliament in Kinshasa. He dedicated most of it to the security situation in North Kivu. He said that the objective of the war currently raging in the East of the DRC is to “create hotbeds of tension to create chaos and thus justify the Balkanization of the country”.

Congo President Kabila Wants Stronger UN Force to Fight Rebels | 15th December 2012 | Bloomberg

DR Congo’s president, Joseph Kabila, called for a stronger mandate for the United Nations peacekeepers in the country. “The current crisis has proven, one more time, the limits of the approach of its actions in our country to the deep frustration of the government and the Congolese population,” president Kabila told a joint session of parliament in Kinshasa. “We have requested a reorganization of its mandate to bring it in line with the reality on the ground.”

Congo’s Kabila says plans initiative to unite country | 15th December 2012 | Reuters | AlertNet

DRC President Joseph Kabila said on Saturday he was planning an initiative aimed at uniting the central African nation, torn by an eastern rebellion and a furious political opposition. “National cohesion must not be conditional, it must be open for all,” Kabila said in an address to parliament. “An initiative will be taken shortly, the details to be decided in due course. There should not be a Congo for the majority and a separate one for the opposition.”

DR Congo leader says defence top priority after rebel takeover | 15th December 2012 | Africa Daily

DR Congo President Joseph Kabila on Saturday vowed that defence would be a top priority for his government after the recent brief rebel takeover of Goma. “Defence, nothing but defence, with a dissuasive, apolitical and professional army. “I call on our youth to massively enlist,” he said, adding that “any new attempt at aggression will be suicidal.”

Kabila also accused neighbouring Rwanda of backing the push by the M23 rebels, echoing accusations by the United Nations that Rwanda has denied. “An unjust war has been imposed on us one more time. Everything has already been said about this war of aggression by Rwanda,” he said to whistles and cheers from lawmakers.

Les députés de la majorité estime que l’appel à la cohésion du Chef de l’Etat est opportun, ceux de l’opposition insistent sur des préalables | 15th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

L’option militaire prend désormais le dessus | 16th December 2012 | Le Potentiel

Etat de la nation devant le congrès

MONUSCO / UN statements

Conférence de presse des Nations Unies du mercredi 12 décembre 2012 | 12th December 2012 | MONUSCO

Situation in Kivu provinces of eastern DR Congo remains ‘tense and fragile’ – UN spokesperson | 17th December 2012 | UN News Centre

RDC : situation sécuritaire toujours « tendue et fragile » dans les Kivu, confirme l’ONU | 17th December 2012 | UN News Centre

The situation on the ground in the Kivus remains “tense and fragile,” a United Nations spokesperson said today. The spokesperson for the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO), Kieran Dwyer, also said that ‘blue helmets’ from the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the DRC (MONUSCO) have received reports of fighters with the 23 March Movement (M23) armed group around the city of Goma, the capital of North Kivu province.

DR Congo: initial findings by UN confirm human rights violations amid recent violence | 18th December 2012 | UN News Centre

UN says more than 125 rapes during DR Congo army retreat | 18th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

RDCongo: 126 viols près de Goma, neuf soldats gouvernementaux arrêtés (ONU) | 18th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

Neufs soldats arrêtés en RDC pour au moins 126 viols près de Goma | 18th December 2012 | Le Monde

Preliminary findings by United Nations investigators have documented at least 126 rapes and the killing of two civilians – one a minor – during a probe into human rights violations in and around the town of Minova between November 20 and 30, as the army retreated from advancing M23 rebels. A parallel investigation by the armed forces of DRC (FARDC), has led to the arrest of nine FARDC soldiers, two in connection with the rapes, and seven in connection with lootings, a UN spokesperson, Martin Nesirky, told at UN Headquarters in New York.

Les Casques bleus en alerte en RDCongo, l’ONU “prête à envoyer” des renforts | 19th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

The head of the United Nations peace-keeping operations, Hervé Ladsous, said the UN is “ready to send reinforcements” to DR Congo, in response to the movements of the M23 rebels in the region of Goma. Mr. Ladsous told the Security Council and then the press that hundreds of rebels had been identified within a cease-fire zone some 20 km from the provincial capital of North Kivu. “Reinforcements can be transported very very fast to Goma if the circumstances required it”, he said.

Tension in and around Goma

Nord-Kivu : le M23 ne s’est pas retiré de Goma de 20 km, selon la société civile | 12th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

Contrary to the resolution of the heads of State of the Great Lakes that called on the M23 to withdraw beyond 20 miles from Goma, the rebel movement has installed its outpost at Munigi in the territory of Nyirangongo, pnly 10 km away from the provincial capital of North Kivu, civil society sources report.

Goma: le M23 se retire progressivement, selon une structure de la CIRGL | 12th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

The Deputy Coordinator of the joint border verification mechanism, colonel Léon Mahoungo, said Wednesday 12 December the M23 rebels will withdraw 20 km from Goma, in accordance with the resolutions of the Summit of the Heads of State of the ICGLR. He thus responded to the population of Goma who feared a possible attack from M23, installed at Munigi, 10 km from the provincial capital of North Kivu.

Nord-Kivu: des troupes rwandaises signalées à Nyiragongo occupé par le M23 | 13th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

Soldiers of the Rwandan Army (Rwanda Defence Forces) are reported to have entered the DRC Wednesday 12 December via the border posts of Kasizi and Kanyanja, north of Goma, in Nyiragongo territory (North Kivu). This territory is currently occupied by the rebels of the M23. According to local sources, the Rwandans were first seen Tuesday 11 December in the morning. They arrived in a dozen of trucks with ammunition and other war effects of war from the border post of Kasizi.

Le M23 accusé de préparer une nouvelle guerre | 14th December 2012 | RFI | allAfrica

Several sources claim that the M23 rebels, still on the outskirts of Goma, have recently received “Rwandan” battalions to strengthen their ranks in the event of failure of the talks with Kinshasa. The Rwandan soldiers themselves said they are there to hunt for the rebels of the FDLR.

Troops Mass in Fought-Over City, Raising Fear of New Violence in Congo | 16th December 2012 | The New York Times

Hundreds of troops from opposing sides have been moving into new positions around Goma, a strategic, contested city in the DR Congo, aid organizations said Sunday, raising worries of yet another explosion of violence. Witnesses reported that truckloads of Rwandan soldiers recently crossed the border and were camped within 20 miles of Goma. United Nations officials confirmed a sudden military buildup around Goma but said that they did not know the identities of the various groups of soldiers.

Le porte-parole des FARDC au Nord-Kivu placé en détention | 18th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

Lieutenant-Colonel Olivier Hamuli, military spokesman of the FARDC in North Kivu, was placed in detention on Monday 17 December. According to provincial military sources, he is accused of serious breaches in the exercise of its functions within the army, without specifying them.

RD Congo : “Ce n’est pas seulement le M23” qui est autour de Goma (gouvernement) | 18th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

Military sources, residents and human rights activists say that Rwandan troops entered the Congolese territory several times since early December. When questioned by AFP on the allegations, Government spokesman Lambert Mende said: “the information we have allows us to say (…) and I will say no more: it is not only the M23 which is around Goma. That’s all I can say”.

DR Congo accuses M23 rebels of breaching ceasefire | 18th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

The DR Congo on Tuesday accused the M23 rebels of never fully withdrawing from the key eastern city of Goma, despite pledging to do so in a ceasefire brokered by East African nations to end the long-running conflict. “They never completely withdrew, they never carried out the terms of the statement by the heads of state” of the Great Lake region, government spokesman Lambert Mende said. “These are people who go from provocation to provocation. We expect everything, absolutely everything from our attackers.”

Psychose et compte à rebours à Goma | 18th December 2012 | Le carnet de Colette Braeckman

International troops for neutral force

No Nam Troops to DRC | 13th December 2012 | The Namibian | allAfrica

Namibia will not contribute any troops to the SADC Standby Force for the Democratic Republic of Congo, but will assist the mission in other ways. The Southern African Development Community (SADC) last weekend pledged to send 4 000 troops to form a neutral force in eastern Congo, where rebels have waged an eight-month siege.

Zimbabwe: Nation to Deploy in DRC. . . Kinshasa to Meet Costs, Operation to Last One Year, SADC Okays Move | 13th December 2012 | The Herald | allAfrica

Zimbabwe will deploy troops to the Democratic Republic of Congo as part of a neutral Sadc force pledged by the regional bloc to resolve the armed conflict in the eastern part of that country.

Zimbabwe: Troops Heading to DRC, Again | 13th December 2012 | SW Radio Africa (London) | allAfrica

An official within ZANU PF has confirmed that troops from Zimbabwe will once again be heading to the war ravaged Democratic Republic of Congo, this time as part of a peacekeeping force under the regional Southern African Development Community (SADC).

Zimbabwe: DRC Deployment – Mugabe Did Not Consult Cabinet | 14th December 2012 | Zimbabwe Independent | allAfrica

Cabinet and parliament as well as Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai were not consulted by President Robert Mugabe when he decided to deploy Zimbabwean troops to the DRC as part of a Sadc peacekeeping force.

‘We Have Not Deployed in DRC’ . . . President Says SADC Standby Brigade Will Help Kinshasa, Tanzania Is Commander of the Regional Force | 17th December 2012 | The Herald | allAfrica

Zimbabwe has not deployed troops to the Democratic Republic of Congo, but will only contribute soldiers to a Sadc Standby Brigade for a peacekeeping mission in that country, President Mugabe has said.

Kudos to SADC for DRC Force | 17th December 2012 | The Herald | allAfrica

News that Sadc has finally moved to deploy its standby force in the Democratic Republic of Congo is providential and shows that the regional group is carrying on the legacy of the Front Line States that preceded it. As we report elsewhere in this issue, we are contributing troops to the Standby Force and we are not going in as Zimbabwe but as part of a Sadc force.

Petit à petit se signalent les armées de la Force neutre de sécurisation de la frontière entre la RDc et le Rwanda | 14th December 2012 | Digitalcongo.net

US on Rwanda and M23

Obama Warns Rwanda’s President Against Backing Congo M23 Rebels | 19th December 2012 | Bloomberg

U.S. President Barack Obama urged Rwandan President Paul Kagame to end all assistance for rebel groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, calling such support “inconsistent” with regional stability. During a phone call yesterday with Kagame, Obama pressed the importance of “reaching a transparent and credible political agreement that includes an end to impunity” by commanders of rebels, including the M23 group, linked to human rights abuses, according to a White House statement.

Congo: Two Rebel Leaders Hit With Financial Sanctions | 18th December 2012 | The New York Times

The United States blacklisted two senior leaders of the M23 movement, Col. Baudoin Ngaruye and Col. Innocent Kaina, accusing them of recruiting child soldiers and obstructing peaceful resolution of the chronic conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Rep. Karen Bass, Ranking Member of the House Subcommittee On Africa, Global Health and Human Rights Joins House Colleagues in Asking for Congo Envoys | 12th December 2012 | United States Congress | allAfrica

Washington, D.C — Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-CA), Ranking Member of the House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health and Human Rights joined 12 members of the U.S. House of Representatives asking the Obama Administration to appoint a U.S. envoy as well as the appointment of a U.N. envoy to help in diffusing the crisis engulfing eastern Congo.

Susan Rice renounces State Dpt

Congo: Susan Rice dans le collimateur | 13th December 2012 | Le carnet de Colette Braeckman

Susan Rice and Africa’s unholy trinity | 13th December 2012 | Pambazuka News

Susan Rice renonce au département d’état | 14th December 2012 | BBC Afrique

Susan Rice rattrapée par son soutien à Kigali | 15th December 2012 | Le Potentiel | allAfrica

Comments, analyses, interviews

Rwanda’s genocide and the bloody legacy of Anglo-American guilt | 12th December 2012 | The Guardian

Failure to intervene in 1994’s horror means the US and UK have refused to rein in President Paul Kagame’s excesses in Congo.

The M23 Funhouse, Where Congolese Youth Get in Free | 12th December 2012 | Radio Netherlands Worldwide | allAfrica

Le M23, une opportunité pour les jeunes ? | 12th December 2012 | Radio Netherlands Worldwide | allAfrica

The M23 movement presents a conundrum to youth in North Kivu. Promised bright, lucrative futures, some young Congolese citizens have joined in the ranks of these rebels.

Policy Brief: Issues That Must Be On the Table at Eastern Congo’s Peace Talks | 13th December 2012 | The Enough Project

As Enough Project Co-founder John Prendergast argued at this week’s House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on the crisis in the Congo, the current approach is “already making all of the same mistakes as its predecessor processes, and will likely result in the same kind of short-term deal” that has left Congo in an state of war for almost two decades.

Africa’s Wealth and Western Poverty of Thought | 13th December 2012 | Pambazuka News | allAfrica

A response to J. Peter Pham’s New York Times’ article on the Congo, November 30, 2012.

RDC: Les Banyamulenge se dissocient des rebelles du M23 | 14th December 2012 | BurundiVision

What if the Kivu war harmed the Congolese Tutsis more that it benefits them? Interview with Enock Ruberangabo, National President a.i. of the Banyamulenge community.

Negotiating With the DRC Rebels – First As Tragedy, Then As Farce? | 14th December 2012 | ThinkAfricaPress | allAfrica

If talks with M23 are not responsibly managed and we see a repeat of the 2009 CNDP talks, we could also see another identikit conflict a few years down the line.

The World’s Worst War | 15th December 2012 | The New York Times

Analysis

Bring Women into DRC Peace Talks – Diop | 16th December 2012 | allAfrica

Last month Bineta Diop – named by Time magazine as one of the world’s most influential women – responded to appeals from local women and visited the conflict-ravaged eastern region of the DRC. She almost didn’t make it out.

Governor accuses rebels of terrorising DR Congo city | 17th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

RD Congo: le M23 veut “maintenir Goma dans la psychose” (gouverneur) | 17th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

The governor of the unstable DR Congo province of North Kivu on Monday accused rebels of the M23 movement of seeking to terrorise people in the eastern city of Goma, which they had left after a brief occupation. Julien Paluku argued that the rebels were maintaining “pressure to show that at any moment, if this or that isn’t done in Kampala, they will take Goma.”

Meanwhile in Goma – Withdrawal of M23 and Kampala ‘Negotiations’ | 17th December 2012 | African Arguments

The day Goma fell to the M23 I was on my way there, having planned to take a boat to Eastern Congo’s largest city on November 20th from Bukavu. Eventually I had to travel to Kinshasa through Bujumbura and Nairobi. Three weeks later, the flights from the capital to the east have become normalised again.

Analysis: Seeking civilian and military solutions in the DRC | 18th December 2012 | IRIN

Even as they continue to work toward a negotiated solution to the crisis in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the leaders of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) are planning to deploy a 4,000-strong “neutral force” to the region to improve its security. Yet regional analysts and stakeholders are at odds over the force’s composition and mandate.

Hazy motives fuel Congo conflict | 18th December 2012 | Financial Times

Minerals are only one factor behind the most extensive rebellion in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo in years.

FDLR allegedly massing troops in Masisi territory, North Kivu

6,000 Rebels Preparing Offensive | 18th December 2012 | News of Rwanda | allAfrica

According to News of Rwanda, a classified United Nations document says the FDLR militia is amassing troops – with some from Zambia and Congo Brazzaville in preparation for an attack on Rwanda. The document with reference number CLA-MP-94/12-12 dated December 17 was prepared by MONUSCO for internal consumption. It reads in part: “Reliable sources (humanitarian workers) has reported to MONUSCO’s component on 16th Dec 12 about the presence of 4000 FDLR cadres at Kazibake…, Groupement of Bashali Mokoto, Localité Lukweti/Ndurumo.”

Mai-Mai surrender in Lubero territory, North Kivu

Lubero: plus de 100 miliciens Maï-Maï se rendent aux FARDC | 14th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

Over 100 Mai-Mai militiamen of general Kikuli la Fontaine and of colonel la Tempête began surrendering to the FARDC on 13 December in Lubero territory, North Kivu.

Heavy fighting over gold mines in Mambasa territory, Ituri, Province Orientale

Province Orientale : les FARDC récupèrent plusieurs localités occupées par les hommes de Morgan | 13th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

Ituri: 3 militaires tués dans des affrontements entre les FARDC et des déserteurs | 18th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

Reportedly about 200 army deserters from North Kivu lead by a certain colonel Hilaire attacked and chased the FARDC from several villages in the gold-rich Pangoy area in Mambasa territory, Ituri. Only a week ago, the Congolese army had succeeded in chasing the militiamen of rebel chief Paul Sadala alias Morgan from the same villages, after four months of occupation.

LRA activity in Province Orientale

Faradje: des rebelles LRA ont enlevé 5 personnes à Lidjo, selon la Société civile | 14th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

According to the civil society of Watsa, armed men identified as Ugandan rebels of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) kidnapped five people in the village of Lidjo in Faradje territory, Province Orientale.

Province orientale – Des groupes armés actifs à Duru-Kpaika-Nambia | 13th December 2012 | Le Potentiel | allAfrica

MONUSCO says elements of the LRA are still present in certain parts of Province Orientale.

Violence in central Katanga

Mitwaba : des hommes armés tuent le conservateur du parc de l’Upemba | 18th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

The curator of the Upemba national park was killed by armed men last Saturday, 15 December, in the territory of Mitwaba (Katanga).

The same day, in the same territory, Congolese soldiers fell into an ambush by Mai-Mai militiamen.

Human Rights Risk Atlas 2013 – DRC second

Crackdown on political dissent spurs rise in human rights abuses in growth economies – Maplecroft Risk Atlas | 13th December 2012 | Maplecroft news

The risk of complicity in human rights violations by security forces is especially high in fragile, resource rich countries such as DR Congo (2), Myanmar (6), Iraq (7), Nigeria (12) and Indonesia (32).

Uganda

Ugandan Defence Chief on ADF and M23 rebels

UPDF Will Only Enter Congo to Fight ADF- Aronda | 15th December 2012 | The New Vision | allAfrica

The chief of defence forces, Gen. Aronda Nyakairima, recently revealed that the Allied Democratic Front (ADF) rebels in the eastern DR Congo are re-organising and recruiting to attack Uganda. Joshua Kato talked to him about the threat.

Central African Republic

Rebels also take Bamingui and Bria

RCA : les rebelles menacent Bozizé | 18th December 2012 | BBC Afrique

Centrafrique: Les attaques dans le nord-est revendiquées par une alliance de groupes armés | 18th December 2012 | RFI | allAfrica

Central African Republic rebels take diamond-mine town | 18th December 2012 | BBC Africa

Centrafrique: Les rebelles entrent dans la ville minière de Bria | 18th December 2012 | RFI | allAfrica

Centrafrique : des villes du Nord-Est entre les mains des rebelles | 18th December 2012 | Afrik.com

Chad deploys troops to help fight CAR rebels | 19th December 2012 | BBC Africa

Rebel forces in the Central African Republic (CAR) have captured Bria, a key mining town in a diamond-rich region. The new rebel coalition, “Seleka”, says it now controls at least four towns and has threatened to overthrow the government. Chad has sent troops to fight them.

Sexual violence in conflict

Central African Republic: UN envoy signs agreements on conflict-related sexual violence | 12th December 2012 | UN News Centre

République centrafricaine: deux accords conclus par l’ONU pour mieux protéger les victimes de violences sexuelles | 12th December 2012 | UN News Centre

The UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict, Zainab Hawa Bangura, today concluded a visit to the Central African Republic (CAR) with the announcement of two agreements on conflict-related sexual violence with stakeholders in the country’s peace process. In addition to focussing greater international attention on the situation in the CAR, the aim of the envoy’s visit was to gain first-hand knowledge of the challenges involved in addressing conflict-related sexual violence there.

Refugee and IDP Reports

Non-comprehensive overview and selected articles on the status of refugees in the Great Lakes Region

DRC 

Situation humanitaire en République Démocratique du Congo: Note d’information à la presse, 12 décembre 2012 | 12th December 2012 | UNOCHA | Reliefweb

Bulletin d’Information Humanitaire – Province du Sud-Kivu N° 50/12, 12 décembre 2012 | 12th December 2012 | UNOCHA | Reliefweb

More than 900,000 displaced in east DR Congo: UN | 13th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

RDC : Plus de 900.000 personnes déplacées comptabilisées au Nord Kivu (HCR) | 13th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

More than 900,000 people have been displaced by violence in the strife-ridden eastern DR Congo region of North Kivu, up about 500,000 on the figure made public in April, a UN official said Thursday. The steep rise was due to intense fighting between the army and rebel group M23 around the regional capital Goma, said Gert Weskereen of UN refugee agency UNHCR.

RD Congo : les déplacés du Nord-Kivu à nouveau dans la tourmente | 13th December 2012 | MSF | Reliefweb

Rapport de Situation Humanitaire sur la République Démocratique du Congo – 14 décembre 2012 | 14th December 2012 | UNOCHA | Reliefweb

RDC : CARE recueille les témoignages des déplacés | 14th December 2012 | CARE | Reliefweb

Nord-Kivu – Banro vole au secours des déplacés de Mugunga | 14th December 2012 | Le Potentiel | allAfrica

DR Congo fighting ‘sees refugee numbers rise’ | 15th December 2012 | BBC Africa

Humanitarian workers have warned of a sharp rise in refugees in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo as a result of recent fighting.

Shattered Families, Raped Lives in DR Congo | 16th December 2012 | The Independent (Kampala) | allAfrica

Refugees recount M23’s invasion, rapes and murder.

Displaced People in North Kivu Are Facing Renewed Turmoil | 17th December 2012 | MSF | allAfrica

UNHCR still concerned about security situation in camps near Goma | 18th December 2012 | UNHCR | Reliefweb

Le HCR reste préoccupé par la situation de sécurité dans les camps près de Goma | 18th December 2012 | UNHCR | Reliefweb

Les personnes déplacées dans l’est de la RDC toujours sous la menace des groupes armés rebelles, selon le HCR | 18th December 2012 | UN News Centre

Millions Left At the Mercy of Militias and Armed Forces Across Eastern Congo | 18th December 2012 | Oxfam International | allAfrica

Des millions de personnes sous la menace des milices et forces armées dans l’Est de la RDC | 18th December 2012 | Oxfam | Reliefweb

EU Nobel Prize Money Granted to Save the Children and Norwegian Refugee Council | 18th December 2012 | Marketwire

13,000 children who have fled from conflict in Somalia and DR Congo will benefit from EU Nobel prize money, granted to Save the Children and the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC).

Burundi 

UNHCR Burundi Bulletin spécial sur Mtabila No. 10 | 14th December 2012 | UNHCR | Reliefweb

Other

South Sudan – Congolese refugees

Over 3,000 refugees in Morobo County | 17th December 2012 | Miraya FM | Reliefweb

Over three thousand six hundred refugees fleeing conflict in the DR Congo have crossed into Moro County in Central Equatoria State. The Refugees are fleeing conflict between DR Congo government forces and M23 rebels in the eastern part of the country.

Zambia – Congolese refugees

Zambia: Housing the DRC refugees | 13th December 2012 | IRIN

Over the past five weeks, almost 1,000 people have fled into Zambia to escape fighting in the DR Congo, forcing the Zambian government to consider re-opening a refugee camp it closed two years ago. The refugees are pouring into Kilwa Island, on Lake Mweru, from villages in DRC’s Katanga Province. Many refugees have told the Zambians that they fled an onslaught by the Mai-Mai militia groups, while others said they had been forced to leave because of fighting between the government’s forces, FARDC, and the rebel group M23 in eastern DRC.

Central African Republic – IDPs

Central African Republic – Help for People Fleeing Violence in Ndélé | 14th December 2012 | ICRC | allAfrica

Several hundred people have fled their homes since armed men attacked Ndélé, a town of 20,000 inhabitants in northern Central African Republic, on 10 December.

Justice and Tribunals 

Non-comprehensive overview and selected articles on major trials and tribunals for crimes committed in the Great Lakes Region

DRC

ICC acquits Mathieu Ngudjolo

In its second ever verdict, the International Criminal Court (ICC) of The Hague acquitted former Congolese militia leader Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui and ordered his immediate release. He had been charged with war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in 2003 during an attack against the village of Bogoro in Ituri (Province Orientale), a massacre that claimed almost 200 lives. Judges said that the prosecution had not proved “beyond reasonable doubt” that Ngudjolo was the leader of the Lendu fighters who took part in the attack, but they emphasised that Ngudjolo’s acquittal did not mean no crimes occurred in the village.

La CPI prononcera son deuxieme verdict mardi | 16th December 2012 | Hirondelle News Agency | allAfrica

ICC to Hand Down Second Verdict Tuesday | 17th December 2012 | Hirondelle News Agency | allAfrica

Procès Ngudjolo à la CPI : le verdict sera rendu ce mardi | 17th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

La CPI va prononcer son premier verdict pour meurtre, contre Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui | 18th December 2012 | Le Monde

RDC : la CPI acquitte Mathieu Ngudjolo | 18th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

ICC acquits Congolese ex-militia boss of war crimes | 18th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

Congo militia boss Ngudjolo acquitted of war crimes at Hague | 18th December 2012 | BBC Africa

CPI: un ex-chef de milice congolais acquitté | 18th December 2012 | BBC Afrique

Congolese militia leader acquitted of rape and murder charges | 18th December 2012 | The Guardian

ICC acquits Congolese militia leader over atrocities | 18th December 2012 | The Guardian

ICC Acquits Congolese Militia Leader of War Crimes | 18th December 2012 | Voice of America

Congo Warlord’s ICC Acquittal Raises Questions | 18th December 2012 | Voice of America

ICC Acquits Mathieu Ngudjolo in Second Verdict | 18th December 2012 | Hirondelle News Agency | allAfrica

Mathieu Ngudjolo acquitté pour les crimes de Bogoro | 18th December 2012 | Hirondelle News Agency | allAfrica

International Criminal Court acquits former Congolese rebel leader of war crimes | 18th December 2012 | UN News Centre

La CPI acquitte un ancien chef rebelle congolais de crimes contre l’humanité | 18th December 2012 | UN News Centre

Congolese Rebel Leader Is Acquitted of War Crimes | 18th December 2012 | The New York Times

Le milicien congolais Mathieu Ngudjolo acquitté par la Cour pénale internationale | 18th December 2012 | RFI | allAfrica

ICC acquits DR Congo ‘warlord’ Ngudjolo | 18th December 2012 | Al Jazeera

Congo war crimes trial ends in acquittal | 18th December 2012 | CNN

Disappointment, fear after ex-DR Congo militia boss freed | 18th December 2012 | AFP | Reliefweb

ICC: Congolese Rebel Leader Acquitted in Court’s Second Case | 18th December 2012 | Human Rights Watch

ICC acquits Congolese armed group leader | 18th December 2012 | Amnesty International

Warlord verdict casts doubt on Hague court | 18th December 2012 | Financial Times

La CPI ordonne la libération de Ngudjolo | 18th December 2012 | BBC Afrique

La CPI rejette la demande de maintien en détention de Mathieu Ngudjolo | 19th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

ICC Bemba trial suspended until March 2013

Le procès Bemba suspendu jusqu’au 4 mars 2013 | 14th December 2012 | Hirondelle News Agency | allAfrica

Procès Bemba: les audiences sont suspendues jusqu’au 4 mars 2013 | 14th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

Belgian judicial inquiry into death Lumumba

Ouverture d’une enquête sur la mort de Patrice Lumumba | 12th December 2012 | Le Soir / AFP

A court in Brussels authorised a judicial inquiry into the death of the former Congolese Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba, murdered in 1961. The Lumumba family had lodged a complaint against several Belgians in 2011.

Compétence universelle pour Lumumba ? | 13th December 2012 | Le Soir

Is the killing of Patrice Lumumba to be considered murder or a war crime?

Assassinat de Patrice Lumumba – vers un procès en Belgique? | 13th December 2012 | RFI | allAfrica

Assassinat de Patrice Lumumba – La justice belge va rouvrir le dossier 50 ans après | 13th December 2012 | RFI | allAfrica

La Belgique ouvre le dossier Lumumba | 13th December 2012 | BBC Afrique

Affaire Lumumba: la famille du héros national sollicite l’appui du gouvernement congolais | 13th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

Assassinat de Lumumba – La justice belge veut identifier les commanditaires | 13th December 2012 | Le Potentiel | allAfrica

Comment les belges ont fait disparaître Lumumba | 14th December 2012 | RFI | allAfrica

Rwanda 

ICTR – terms of judges extended

Security Council extends terms of judges serving on UN Rwanda genocide tribunal | 12th December 2012 | UN News Centre

Security Council extends term of office of five appeals judges for Rwanda criminal tribunal until 31 December 2014 – resolution 2080 (2012) adopted unanimously | 13th December 2012 | UN Security Council | Reliefweb

Le Conseil de sécurité proroge de deux ans le mandat des juges du Tribunal pénal international pour le Rwanda (TPIR) – résolution 2080 (2012) | 12th December 2012 | UN Security Council | Reliefweb

The UN Security Council extended the term of office of five judges serving with the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) in Arusha, Tanzania, to facilitate the completion of the court’s work. The Council has urged both the ICTR and the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) to conclude their work by the end of 2014.

Two ICTR convicts released

Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals Grants Bisengimana, Serushago Early Release | 13th December 2012 | Hirondelle News Agency | allAfrica

Rwanda: Libération anticipée pour deux condamnés du TPIR ayant plaidé coupables | 13th December 2012 | Hirondelle News Agency | allAfrica

The Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals (MICT) granted early release to ex-Rwandan mayor, Paul Bisengimana, and former Interahamwe militiaman Omar Serushago, both detained in Mali.

Kigali High Court – Mugesera trial

Mugesera Trial Resumes Today | 17th December 2012 | The New Times | allAfrica

Rwanda/Justice – Mugesera Trial Opens With Defence Challenge | 17th December 2012 | Hirondelle News Agency | allAfrica

Rwanda/Justice : La défense de Mugesera conteste la compétence temporelle de la cour | 17th December 2012 | Hirondelle News Agency

Mugesera, who was extradited from Canada last January, is charged in connection with a 1992 speech. The five charges against him include planning and publicly inciting genocide.

Natural Resources in the Great Lakes Region

Recent news on issues relating to natural resource extraction and governance in the Great Lakes Region.

DRC 

Belgian resolution to protect Virunga National Park

Georges Dallemagne | 18th December 2012 | Africa Energy Intelligence

Georges Dallemagne, a Belgian MP, succeeded on Dec. 13 in getting Parliament to adopt a resolution calling on the government to turn up heat on Kinshasa to ensure that all oil exploration permits (operated by Soco and Total) inside the Virunga national park in the eastern part of Congo-K be cancelled.

‘Conflict minerals’

Central Africa: The quest for clean hands | 18th December 2012 | Financial Times

Analysis. A Dodd-Frank act provision on stemming ‘conflict minerals’ trade has failed to rein in Congo militias.

Extractive Companies, Energy, Trade and Foreign Investment

Recent news on national and international extractive and energy companies and investment in the Great Lakes Region

DRC

Mining

DRC miner draws down $515.5m loan to expand operations | 14th December 2012 | Mining Weekly

DRC-focused copper/cobalt miner Katanga Mining says it has met all conditions precedent to draw down its $515.5-million senior secured facility provided by commodity trader Glencore. The facility funds part of the Phase 4 expansion of Katanga’s copper/cobalt mine, in the Kolwezi district of the DRC.

Alphamin Resources Corp.: Update on Bisie Tin Project, DRC | 18th December 2012 | Aphamin Resources Corp. | Marketwire

Alphamin Resources Corp. has received results for a further 5 holes drilled on its wholly owned Bisie Tin Project in Walikale territory, North Kivu Province, DRC. Tin mineralisation at Bisie is unique due to the high grades of tin exploited historically by artisanal miners and confirmed with drilling.

Concordia Announces the Start of Drilling on Its Ebende Project in the Democratic Republic of Congo | 18th December 2012 | Concordia Resource Corp | Marketwire

Concordia Resource Corp. announced that its joint venture partner, High Power Exploration Inc., has commenced an initial drill program and will begin an airborne magnetics survey this month over the southern licences of Concordia’s Ebende Project in the DR Congo, Kasai Oriental province. The exploration program is targeting nickel-copper and platinum group elements.

Oil

Le ministre des Hydrocarbures déplore la sous-exploitation des 31 blocs pétroliers du pays | 15th December 2012 | Le Potentiel | allAfrica

The Congolese Minister of Hydrocarbons deplores the under-exploitation of the rich petroleum resources in 31 identified blocks in the DR Congo.

Georges Dallemagne | 18th December 2012 | Africa Energy Intelligence

Georges Dallemagne, a Belgian MP, succeeded on Dec. 13 in getting Parliament to adopt a resolution calling on the government to turn up heat on Kinshasa to ensure that all oil exploration permits (operated by Soco and Total) inside the Virunga national park in the eastern part of Congo-K be cancelled.

Uganda

Oil

Museveni, Putin agree on oil, arms | 12th December 2012 | Daily Monitor

Kampala

Russia’s largest private crude producer, LUKoil, has expressed interest in the exploration, production and refining of Uganda’s waxy oil, according to reports in the Russian media. The development came a day before President Museveni met his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in Moscow, where they discussed prospects of bilateral cooperation on energy and mining.

Ernest Rubondo | 18th December 2012 | Africa Energy Intelligence

The powerful boss of the petroleum exploration and production department at Uganda’s energy ministry, Ernst Rubondo, accompanied the country’s president when he travelled to Russia last week. (…)

Oil Officials Should Declare Wealth – DP | 12th November 2012 | The New Vision | allAfrica

The Democratic Party (DP), has demanded that all public officials involved in the oil industry declare their assets and subject their declaration to verification.

Analysis: New law fails to ease oil concerns in Uganda | 13th December 2012 | IRIN

Uganda’s parliament recently passed a law to govern the exploration, development and production of the country’s estimated three billion barrels of oil, a resource whose extraction will directly affect the livelihoods of tens of thousands of people. While the law streamlines the burgeoning industry, analysts have raised concerns over transparency and over who controls the sector.

President Museveni’s Speech to Parliament in Full | 16th December 2012 | The New Vision | allAfrica

President Yoweri Museveni Thursday afternoon addressed Parliament on various issues, top of the agenda being oil.

Uganda President Says Foreigners Sabotaging Oil Sector | 13th December 2012 | Voice of America

Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni, facing donor aid cuts over graft, on Thursday accused unnamed “foreign interests” of sabotaging the oil sector to prevent the country from attaining financial freedom.

MPs Were Bribed to Fail Oil Bill – Museveni | 14th December 2012 | The New Vision | allAfrica

President Yoweri Museveni has asked the Inspector General of Government to investigate circumstances under which some Members of Parliament were paid huge sums of money during debate on the Petroleum (Exploration, Development and Production) Bill 2012. Museveni suspects that the MPs were generously funded by foreign interests bent on frustrating development of Uganda’s oil sector.

Uganda: President Warns Lawmakers Over Oil Sabotage | 17th December 2012 | East African Business Week | allAfrica

Members of parliament who were bribed to sabotage government from passing of the oil Exploration Development and Production Bill 2012 may end up in courts of law if the, Ombudsman, the Inspector General of Government implement what the president has ordered.

NGOs Hit Back At President Museveni Over Oil | 15th December 2012 | The New Vision | allAfrica

NGOs which President Yoweri Museveni accused of funding MPs to oppose the Oil Bill have shot back. The heads of the NGOs say they will not be intimidated or gagged.

Civil Society Coalition On Oil Hits Back At Museveni Jibes | 15th December 2012 | The Independent (Kampala) | allAfrica

The Civil Society Coalition on Oil (CSCO), a group of Ugandan NGOs following the oil and gas sector have labeled President Museveni’s accusations that the NGOs and some MPs were representing ‘foreign interests’ during the just concluded debate on the Petroleum (Exploration, Development and Production) Bill, 2012 as diversionary politics.

Uganda to Build Oil Refinery | 14th December 2012 | The New Vision | allAfrica

President Yoweri Museveni has emphasized the need for Uganda to refine its oil instead of exporting it in crude form.

Oil Refinery Survey Starts Next Year | 18th December 2012 | The New Vision | allAfrica

An environmental baseline survey on the proposed land for the establishment of an oil refinery at Kabaale in Buseruka sub-county, Hoima district will start in January.

Oil bill squeezes through | 18th December 2012 | Africa Energy Intelligence

Uganda’s oil industry has come under new legislation since Dec. 7.

Rwanda

Tungsten mining

Wolfram Mining and Processing Secures Tungsten Mining Concession | 13th December 2012 | Rwanda Focus | allAfrica

Five Year Mining Deal | 16th December 2012 | The New Times | allAfrica

Mining Day Celebrated in Kayonza | 17th December 2012 | The New Times | allAfrica

The government has signed a five year mining concession extension with Wolfram Mining and Processing Limited for wolfram also known as tungsten exploitation. The concession area comprises a mine in Gifurwe, Burera District in the Northern Province.

Central African Republic 

Hydropower

La BAD et la Centrafrique signent un Accord de don de 23 milliards de FCFA pour financer un projet d’interconnexion des réseaux électriques avec la RDC | 18th December 2012 | Africa Development Bank Group

The Africa Development Bank and the Central African Republic (CAR) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding relating to the first phase of the project of interconnection of the power networks of the CAR and the DRC, from the hydropower system of Boali.

Regulation, Compliance and Corporate Social Responsibility

Non-comprehensive overview and selected articles on legal and reputational issues relating to businesses operating in the Great Lakes Region 

DRC

EITI – Katanga provincial office opened

Kabwelulu installe une antenne de l’ITIE au Katanga pour aider à la collecte des données | 14th December 2012 | Le Potentiel | allAfrica

The Congolese Minister of Mines Martin Kabwelulu installed in Lubumbashi (Katanga) on Friday 14 December, the first provincial office of the Technical Secretariat of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI).

Dodd-Frank Act on ‘conflict minerals’

Central Africa: The quest for clean hands | 18th December 2012 | Financial Times

Analysis. A Dodd-Frank act provision on stemming ‘conflict minerals’ trade has failed to rein in Congo militias.

IMF loan suspension

Les risques de corruption montrent que le FMI a eu raison d’arrêter son programme de prêts au Congo | 12th December 2012 | Global Witness

(Translation in French of a statement originally published in English on 5 December 2012)

Bloomberg and Reuters news agencies have reported that the International Monetary Fund has halted its loan programme with the DR Congo because of concerns over transparency in the country’s mining sector. While Congo is clearly in desperate need of funds, Global Witness believes that concerns over possible corruption in the country’s mining sector were so serious that the IMF was justified in stopping its lending.

RDC: le ministre des Mines juge « démesurée » la suspension des prêts du FMI | 18th December 2012 | Radio Okapi

The Congolese Minister of Mines Martin Kabwelulu, judges “disproportionate” the decision by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to suspend $240 million of loans to the DRC because of the failed publication of some mining contracts

Scroll to Top