Friday, September 26, 2008



Thursday, 25th September, 2008

By Vision reporter

TENS of thousands of people have been displaced in the DR Congo as a result of recent attacks by LRA rebels, according to the UN-run Radio Okapi.

The radio yesterday said Caritas, a Catholic NGO, had registered 75,000 displaced people in Dungu by Wednesday and the influx continued unabated.

“All the displaced are staying with host families,” the radio reported, adding that the UN Office for Humanitarian Affairs had appealed for urgent assistance to address the crisis.

The displacement follows attacks on several villages in the Dungu area on September 17 and 18. The rebels looted and burnt down hundreds of houses, killed about eight people and abducted at least 90 school children.

A demonstration against the continued LRA attacks yesterday turned violent, as hundreds of protesters stormed the residence of the peace-keepers in Dungu, looted it and set on fire one of the UN vehicles.

“The demonstrators then moved to the office of the local administration. They were repulsed by the Police, which had to fire in the air to disperse the crowd,” Radio Okapi reported.

According to the local chief, the population feels abandoned in the face of the LRA violence. People, he said, complained that no action had been taken to try and rescue the children abducted in the recent raids.

Earlier, on Monday, another 2,000 demonstrators marched in the streets of Isiro, another Congolese town, protesting the LRA incursions.

“Students, teachers, medical staff, traders and civil servants all came out onto the streets to demonstrate their fury against the Ugandan rebels,” the radio said.

It added that the demonstration paralysed all activities in the town.
Meanwhile, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon assured President Yoweri Museveni in New York yesterday that “the UN peace mission in the DRC is being strenghtened and will take action against Kony”, according to a press release by State House.

The UN Secretary General was responding to concerns raised by Museveni that Kony should not be allowed to continue enjoying the comfort and sanctuary of the DRC.

“If the DRC government could not act, it would be up to the UN, which is responsible for maintaining international peace and security, to take action because Kony is a threat to international peace,” the President told the UN Secretary General.