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Old 07-14-2006   #1
Jedburgh
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Default DR Congo Backs "Guns for Bikes"

Moderator's Note

On the 8th December 2011 this thread's title was changed from 'Congo-Rwandan War: the Ever Ready Rabbit', to Gazing in the Congo (DRC): the dark heart of Africa, which recognises that matters Congo (DRC) are the focus. Several smaller threads were merged into it too.


BBC, 14 Jul 06: DR Congo Backs "Guns for Bikes"
Quote:
A scheme under which gunmen in the Democratic Republic of Congo are given bicycles in exchange for their weapons is being extended due to its success.

Ngoy Mulunda, a pastor in the south-eastern Katanga region, says he has been given some 6,500 weapons in the past year, which he has destroyed...
ICG Reports on DR Congo

Last edited by davidbfpo; 12-08-2011 at 10:34 AM. Reason: Mod's note
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Old 07-15-2006   #2
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One of the things they do here in the DRC, is turn in the old, rusty, no longer working weapon for whatever is being offered, be it a bicycle or a bounty. The usable weapons normally get turned in only under duress, as was the case recently with Gedeon' Mai Mai.

The pastor perhaps, is overselling his results.
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Old 07-17-2006   #3
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There is also a tradition that turned in weapons get return to the market; that was the case for the weapons taken from the former Rwandan army. I would agree with Carl that the good reverend is marketing,

Best
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Old 07-18-2006   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carl
One of the things they do here in the DRC, is turn in the old, rusty, no longer working weapon for whatever is being offered, be it a bicycle or a bounty. The usable weapons normally get turned in only under duress, as was the case recently with Gedeon' Mai Mai.

The pastor perhaps, is overselling his results.
While I hope, and yes I know that hope is never a good COA, that this weapons turn-in is not like similar ones in the US, where old and unusable weapons are returned, I cannot help but be encouraged by the fact that reports note "thousands" of weapons being turned over. Admittedly, in a nation where there are millions of weapons, thousands is a drop in the bucket, but it is a start. It also demonstrates that there is some "pseudo" higher order needs that are unrealized or could be exploited there.
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Old 02-06-2007   #5
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Default Gazing in the Congo (DRC): the dark heart of Africa (new title)

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The head of the U.N. mission in Congo said on Saturday he was concerned about growing human rights abuses by the security forces, just days after the worst political violence since landmark elections last year. At least 87 people were killed in the opposition-controlled western province of Bas-Congo according to Interior Minister General Denis Kalume.

But, human rights violations remain widespread, particularly in the country's militia-ridden east. Car hijacks and civilians killings are reported in the east of the province under insurgent control. One local health worker and another villager were killed this weekend by alleged FDLR hutu fighters and the health centre was looted. This violence outbreak is caused by the vacuum left after the 9th brigade was redeployed to the south from Katale to Kilimanyoka on the north axis.

The town of Ikela and its neighbourhood have been cleaned by police reinforced by armed forces. The insurgency started by a certain Nkoy Azoki alias Libanais has been defeated and the insurgents have fled to Opala for safety after two weeks of fight.

Troops have gathered in triangle comprised between Ngungu, Katoyi and Kibabi in Masisi territory (some 40 km West of Goma) and are supposed to plan a resistance to what they call a betrayal by President . They are mainly made of Mai Mai and Hutu warriors led by Major Bigembe and Colonel Mugabo. A new insurgency is imminent, a new way to win posts and money.




Carl, our alumni has been sending these to Stan and me. The Mai Mai go back to the early 60s; they were as I recall the first in the "modern" Congo to come up with the bullets into water business. Mai in Arabic means water and I believe that is true in Swahili as well' And of course the "Hutu warriors" are my old "friends". War in its various forms has been a constant for the Congo since 1994.

Best

Tom

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Old 02-06-2007   #6
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Default More Goma

More from Carl

Quote:
Democratic Republic of Congo named a new government on Monday evening , the announcement was made on state television (RTNC) in Kinshasa. The new government comprises one prime minister, 39 ministers and 20 deputy ministers. The new government kept some ministers, such as Denis Kalume who retained the interior portfolio as minister of state, and brought in figures from parties which backed Kabila through the elections. Is the cabinet strong enough to ease social tensions in the capital town or deal with tribal warriors and insurgents in the east?

Fighting continues in eastern areas, where ethnic militia still operate despite the presence of the MONUC, the world's biggest international peacekeeping force. A MONUC/FARDC joint mission to assess security in Minembwe highlands did not reach destination because of bad weather, but Gen Amisi (FARDC chief-of-staff says all the so-called insurgents will forcibly be taken to Luberizi where 1800 troops are already waiting. Colonel Alexandre (a mai mai fighter) is also gathering his troops for integration in Katshungu-Lulingu; security will improve in both Shabunda and Lulingu (south Kivu).

Drugs, cannabis and alcohol are the main cause of unrest in Ksai Occidental. Lots of civilians and soldiers have been arrested in Kananga and the ops are to be extended to the whole province in order to dismantle the supply chains and eventually destroy cannabis plantations. Cannabis yields more cash than maize, so farmers prefer it regardless the devastating effect on the youth. The same phenomenon is observed in Bukavu. In Goma, locally distilled whisky is sold everywhere and it has a negative effect on motorcyclists and cause traffic accidents at any time.
For maps of the area

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Old 02-06-2007   #7
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"A new insurgency is imminent, a new way to win posts and money."

Whenever the FARDC (the regular Congolese Army) can't handle a revolt or armed flareup, which is almost never, the gov. is in the habit of buying the leaders of the revolt off with a high rank or command of a military district.
So, if you are an ambitious leader with some men to command and you want to better yourself; you command your men to go forth and make trouble. They generally make trouble by murdering innocent people in the area.

Then, the gov. responds by giving the ambitious leader a high rank and a command in the army that was too weak to beat him.
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Old 02-06-2007   #8
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Default Ala Zäirois (err, Congolese)

Quote:
Drugs, cannabis and alcohol are the main cause of unrest in Ksai Occidental. Lots of civilians and soldiers have been arrested in Kananga and the ops are to be extended to the whole province in order to dismantle the supply chains and eventually destroy cannabis plantations. Cannabis yields more cash than maize, so farmers prefer it regardless the devastating effect on the youth. The same phenomenon is observed in Bukavu. In Goma, locally distilled whisky is sold everywhere and it has a negative effect on motorcyclists and cause traffic accidents at any time.
Thanks for the post Carl !
Even as early as 85 cannabis was the preferred crop. It however then had little effect on the locals, it was just business and the Peace Corps and other Groupies would buy whatever was available.

Sad, it appears to have replaced a Simba lager. Worse yet, the Zäirois back then rarely (intentionally) did something to harm younger children. As many as four generations in one household, but the kids were safe (relatively speaking).

On a final note, I don't recall any of the locals driving without causing traffic accidents, and can only imagine doing said on distilled whisky.
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Old 02-07-2007   #9
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Default Congo 7 Feb Sitrep from Carl

Quote:
The new 60 member government, of which 9 are women has urgent tasks. One of its first tasks will be to tackle unrest causes by making security priority number one. Army, police and justice should be given relevant means for deep reformation otherwise all the other actions will be groundless. The government has new faces in it, but no one from rebel groups namely RCD and MLC.

Disarmament of foreign negative forces is a Monuc mandate. The Lords Resistance Army fighters are based in northern DRC (Congo) with a certain Vincent Otti who has decided to resume hostilities from southern Sudan where Joseph Kony (Lords Resistance Army warlord) is still hiding.

The reason for this change is that negotiations are stuck and Kenya has rejected a proposal to host them. Uganda might find it a good reason to cross the boarder into DRC (Congo) and hunt them down. Another group is an ADF/NALU coalition hiding at the foot of Rwenzori mount. The worst of negative armed group is that of Hutu (Rwandan) fighters scattered in the east from South Kivu to North Kivu, their sanctuary stretches at the edge of the Congo jungle. They often mix with Mai Mai tribal warriors ; the Alpha and Bravo mixed brigades are mandated to fight them.

Heavy shelling were reported yesterday morning in the area of Nyamilima-Ishasha to stop an attack of FDLR (Hutu hardliners) and Mai Mai coalition, the 8th military region did not confirm the fights. There is fear of reprisals among the locals who're alleged to cooperate with those negative forces.

Colonel Delemba of Baleine brigade was killed yesterday night when his residence was attacked by tribal warriors faithful to his rival, Colonel Lafontaine. Baleine brigade troops gathered in Bingi town (south west of Butembo) waiting for integration. Civilians have fled to neighbouring towns.
"Army, police and justice should be given relevant means for deep reformation" means they need to be paid. Who gets paid and who does not is the real issue.

The LRA has been a growing threat in the past 2 decades or so; it is very much an armed cult that the Ugandan government and its supporters finally started to take on while my the guy who replaced me in Rwanda, Rick Orth, later served as DATT.



Best

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Old 02-16-2007   #10
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Default Congo 12 February

Latest from Carl in K-town

Quote:
Heavy shootings were heard in Nyabushongo (west of Goma town) when police and army tried jointly to disperse rioters following stabbing of a young man by a neighbour because that one used his private latrine without permission. The stabbed man is admitted in DOCS (Doctors on Call for Service) for emergency care. Revengeful angry mobs destroyed who houses before torching the rest of the buildings.
An appeals court in Bas-Congo has called on the DRC's Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) to organize a second round of polls for the positions of governor and vice governor of the province. The first round of polls to the positions of governor and vice governor for the two Kasai have been rescheduled for Thursday, February 15.

The Mission has deployed a mobile operations unit to South Kivu, which has been beset by unrest even since the formal end of the country's civil war in 1999, to help maintain public order. Military Operations Commander in Ituri district announced that FNI militiamen have fled deeper in Katanga forest instead of surrendering to the army for quick integration.

A miner found a 143-carat diamond in a river in Congo and sold it for $1.4 million, an official said Saturday. Amos Maseko discovered the stone in a river near Banalia, 129 km north of Kisangani, where usually only diamonds of between one and three carats are to be found, the president of the Congolese Federation of Gold and Diamonds, John Tokole told UN radio Okapi. The diamond was cheaply sold to a Lebanese subject because its real value is supposed to $4 million by officials contradicting Kisangani governor who was involved in the deal. Rudimentary mining attracts many minors to resorb unemployment. Those mining sites attract also children, drug consumers and mafia dealers; the main cause of unrest in such places.

A Border Security Force contingent will on Tuesday leave on a peacekeeping mission to Congo. The contingent, consisting of seven officers and fourteen subordinating officers, will be stationed in Lubumbashi and will assist in restoration of law and order for creating a conducive atmosphere for holding of elections.

The choice of Lubumbashi is probably related to illegal mining, mineral smuggle including cobalt and uranium.
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Old 02-16-2007   #11
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Default Congo 13 February

More from Carl in K-Town

Quote:
There is trouble related to dual nationality for some Congolese officials at high level.
The crisis started when a report about two governor candidates being British and
Belgian in addition to their birth Congolese nationality at the same time, so the polls
were rescheduled in the two Kasais. According to the law, being Congolese is exclusive.
If one acquires new nationality, he loses the Congolese one. The National Assembly decided
in a plenary session yesterday that the matter be discussed a bit later to give who illegally hold
the nationality illegally to decide and sort out the situation in time. The decision was wise because
the motion was tabled by opposition seemingly to cause similar trouble to those who accused the
two candidates to governorship. The number of Congolese officials holding their birth nationality illegally
has incredibly increased these years of unrest. Let's wait and see how many will have complied with the
law when investigations start.
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Old 02-16-2007   #12
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Default Congo 14 February

From Carl in K-Town

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The South African government cautioned Wednesday that an early withdrawal of peacekeepers from the Democratic Republic of Congo could reverse gains made since the end of a five-year war in 2003. South Africa has around 2,000 troops serving in MONUC, which mainly consists of soldiers from African armies.

The United Nations appealed on Tuesday for fresh funds to help nearly 100,000 Congolese refugees go home this year, but said continuing violence prevented returns to the eastern part of the DRC. Some $47 million of its $62 million appeal is earmarked for the voluntary repatriation programme, with the remaining $15 million aimed at providing aid to 1.1 million people uprooted within Democratic Republic of Congo.

A train derailed anda t leat twenty passengers died in the town of Mokambo (south east of Lubumbashi) in Katanga province. Congolese National Railway officials told AFP that all those killed were stowaways. When DRC got independence, the railway network was one the most important in Africa, now travelling by train is so hazardous that losses (of lives and goods) are often registered. Tons of food stored by WFP in Lubumbashi cannot be carried to the starving population when airlifts are too costly to the organosation.

Investigations are being carried on by different commissions to find out the cause of last riots in several towns in Bas Congo province. On a different site, at least 250 houses were torched and one person killed in land dispute in Kasai Oriental province (60 km south of Mbujimayi).

Insurgents faithful to renegade general Nkunda are alleged to be recruiting new fighters in Ngungu (Masisi territory). Monuc observed the same recruitment in Tongo where demobilised troops are being conscripted intothe army by a certain Saddam, mixed battalion commander in Tongo. Furthermore, some residents at Karibu hotel preferred to move because Gen Nkunda was alleged to be among the customers this weekend.
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Old 02-16-2007   #13
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Default Congo 16 February

From Carl in K-Town

Quote:
Highlighting that the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) continues to pose "a threat to international peace and security in the region," the Security Council yesterday extended the UN mission in the impoverished DRC for another two months. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called on Congolese authorities to focus on security sector reform and tighten up legislation covering business practices relating to diamond and other minerals to avoid funding armed groups.

The Democratic Republic of Congo faces disaster if United Nations peacekeepers are withdrawn too soon, international aid agency Oxfam warned on Friday. "Without a substantial and effective MONUC presence, the security situation -- which is currently fairly stable -- could soon unravel," Juliette Prodhan, head of Oxfam in the DRC, told Xinhua news agency in Nairobi

When a significant step is made toward democracy by electing 10/11 governors all over the DRC, one minister of the current cabinet resigned before reporting himself. His resignation letter was presented by his party president. Later on three individuals showed up under the same name of Kasongo Ilunga based in Kinshasa, Kalemie and Lubumbashi respectively.

In an effort to pacify the town of Goma, the army has collected more than five hundred weapons in less than a month. The collection started mid January when army officials noticed that some officers preferred to hide in Goma with bodyguards involved in various blunders. All the officers without posts have been ordered to go to Kamina for proper integration.

Security is a major concern in the Grand Nord as well where a Belgian building contractor and farmer (Claude Duvigneaud or Duvignon) was killed at his residence yesterday night together with his guards. Nothing was stolen except his computer laptop.
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Old 02-16-2007   #14
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Carl and Tom,

Quote:
All the officers without posts have been ordered to go to Kamina for proper integration.
An odd place for a gathering or integration, considering what the agency used Kamina for. Swimming pools, et al.

I'd be interested to know. We flew there many times on board a baby blue 727, complete with a maden on the tail

Starting to sound very Zairois. Integration would then mean...execution or simply purgatory ?

Regards, Stan
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Old 02-20-2007   #15
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Default 19 February SitRep

From Carl in Kinshasa

Quote:
Although the 8th military region in North Kivu has not planed operations yet, Col Makenga of Bravo Brigade would like to attack FDLR positions in the park and has asked populations at the south boundary to move elsewhere. Alpha Brigade has also agreed with Mai Mai fighters to jointly attack FDLR positions from Rwindi station in the centre of the park. Given the current location of the FDLR, we fear that our flights to the North will be flying over the battlefield. An alternative route West of the Nyiragongo mount or higher level can be a solution. We shall update the situation tomorrow in case operations are launched earlier.

Frequent house break-ins were reported last week, most targets being residences of NGO national staff. Some of the recent victims are a trainer of CIF house door was broken using a heavy stone and another was a WFP logistics assistant the assaulters found at his gate seeing off a late visitor.
Also from Carl in the same email:

Quote:
If the FARDC actually does attack the FDLR, from what i've been told in the past, they will get beat up. I don't remember anybody directly attacking the FDLR since i've been here. I wonder what is prompting the move.

The FDLR has been hanging around theDRC for over a decade. Do you think this prolonged stay will eventually cause them to wither on the vine?

Out of here on March 13th. looking forward to it.
I bet you are, Carl! If the FARDC follows the martial traditions of the Force Publique, the ANC, and then the FAZ, I am sure the "attack" will be much show and no go. As long as the FDLR can maintain bases in this area and support among certain European circles, they will be there. As I read what little comes out of the area, they are a non-threat to Rwanda at this stage. That said, they are a menace to any sort of equilibriium in the area.

Stan who knows on the integration--what amazes me are the same old players still playing the same old music and you know someone is getting rich by running the music hall.

best

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Old 02-20-2007   #16
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Default 20 February SitRep

From Carl soon to be leaving Kinshasa

Quote:
Growing fears of a showdown between government troops and Rwandan Hutu rebels in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo have halted the return of tens of thousands of displaced persons to their homes in western Rutshuru and northern Masisi territories, OCHA information officer Andrew Zadel yesterday. Heavy shelling was reported in Kwenda river valley this morning, so some civilians have stared fleeing to Kiwanja where more others have been camping for more than a year now. Other IDPs are observed around lake Edward where Bravo mixed brigade attacked Mai Mai positions in Nyakakoma and Nyamitwitwi. As stated in my previous report, the Rutshuru valley is space to avoid when flying to the north.

The recruitment of child soldiers has continued in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), despite the government's efforts to integrate former militia into the army, a local human rights official has said. This finding has been confirmed by the United Nations Mission in the Congo, known as MONUC, the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) and some international NGOs concerned with child welfare. "The integrated brigades contain 257 children, namely 85 with Alpha Brigade, 95 with the Bravo Brigade and 77 with the Charlie Brigade. These figures are based on estimates by inspectors at the time the records were taken and not from official documents. Moreover, the figure for the Bravo Brigade included 35 children and an estimate of 60 for a battalion that they could not check."

The Bunia military court sentenced 15 soldiers to life imprisonment and a fine of $315, 000 each ; they were alleged to have massacred 30 civilians in Bavi (Ituri district) when a mass grave was discovered by UN Human Rights department. Four others were sentenced to life emprisonment for war crimes. In fact they were found guilty of murdering two UN peacekeepers in Mongwalu area in 2003.
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Old 02-20-2007   #17
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Hey Tom !
Quote:
Stan who knows on the integration--what amazes me are the same old players still playing the same old music and you know someone is getting rich by running the music hall.
Strange indeed, it doesn't appear to have changed much from a decade ago. How in God's name do they hang on ? They had little to eat when we were there and we propped the economy with our year together

I often wondered just how long such a feeble USG approach could last. How long would we pour money into this hole ? Were the Babbits and Gores convinced they could make a difference if POTUS hadn't won ?

Quote:
The recruitment of child soldiers has continued in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)
Nigeria yes, but this is not typical Zairois. The youth were content with fulfilling dad's dream of becoming a quasi construction company manager (especially stealthy thief) and father of at least 3 before age 12, but not learning how to operate a M3 grease gun.

Quote:
Heavy shelling was reported in Kwenda river valley this morning
Tom, are we going back as civilians
I want extra, extra pay !

Regards, Stan
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Old 02-21-2007   #18
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Stan and Tom:

I lost this thread and only now just found it again.

I've flown into Kamina Base twice in the last two years. The swimming pools are gone as is all the furniture and almost all of the people. The few people who are there just wander about the place with burdens on their heads like any other village. Most of the glass is still in the windows. (I've noticed the Congolese don't intentionally trash things like they do in poor neighborhoods in the US.)

The tower operator works with a handheld VHF comm and clears you to takeoff and land, if he has been able to charge his battery. The runways and the big hangers and what appear to be all the larger buildings are still there; all empty.

You two guys know this happens but for those who don't, I've heard of soldiers starving to death in various re-integration centers or in transit. One group got posted at Goma airport for weeks and weeks with 0, zero provisions. One general took the trains to be used for moving provisions to his troops and used them to start a railroad business to his hometown. Some of his guys starved.

Speaking of the LRA; one of our employees fought in the Ugandan wars for 3 years and operated against the LRA. He says they are VERY proficient in small unit infantry work.

Which reminds me; last year the UN brought in a Gueatemalan (sic) special forces unit to hunt down the LRA. They fought them once and got thumped. The UN has been very coy about providing details of that fight. Do you guys know anything about it? The most I could get from a UN guy was that "there are special forces, and then there are special forces."
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Old 02-21-2007   #19
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Hi Carl !
Quote:
(I've noticed the Congolese don't intentionally trash things like they do in poor neighborhoods in the US.)
I would agree and assume they will later steal the glass and want it to remain intact
You're right, they don't simply destroy things. I honestly think they are looking at the future of selling it.

Quote:
They fought them once and got thumped. The UN has been very coy about providing details of that fight. Do you guys know anything about it? The most I could get from a UN guy was that "there are special forces, and then there are special forces."
Going into the jungle means one is prepared. The Zairois were accustomed to life in the bush, and even the Belg wouldn't go in. Somebody else's backyard and jungle rules, but I doubt special forces.

Quote:
You two guys know this happens but for those who don't, I've heard of soldiers starving to death in various re-integration centers or in transit. One group got posted at Goma airport for weeks and weeks with 0, zero provisions.
Kamina was a strange re-integration center, but appears to be a way of getting those out of the picture, and yes with no provisions. We saw what happened when the GOZ tried to send her 31st para out of Goma for "relocation". The 31st paras took matters into their own hands and hijacked the 727 back home.

Take care Carl !
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Old 04-12-2007   #20
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Default The Latest from the Congo

Carl has been sending these and I have not posted them all.

Salient issues in the past few weeks included:

The DRC insituted a crackdown against private militias under the control of a favorite of both Stan and me, Mssr. Bemba. Bemba once started a minor shooting war over cellular phones while Stan and I watched. This crack down precipitated a fracas as described below. The author is not a native English speaker and the prose is a bit rough. Nevertheless is does convey life in the Congo. Gombe is the central part of Kinshasa where Stan and I lived and worked. Ndolo is the airport in the center of Kinshasa where the small carriers generally base from.

Quote:
Hi Carl,
Very happy to hear about you. Shootings started on thursday 22 at around 10:30, we thought as usual the situation could be controlled after few hours. so we did not move from the office, we continued working. Good enough we had asked the pilots living at Lilas to move before 9:00, and it was done. hootings continued the whole day long and as you can see our area, we were surrounded by the soldiers from the camp, and those from Haut commandement street ( the street of wimbi dira) and it was difficult to go out. so we remained in the office till late and we finally decided to leave despite shootings. God helped, we reached our homes safely. Bemba's guys resisted the whole thursday and as the army used heavy machine guns the whole night, they were weakened and left Gombe for the city. Many people were supporting them on their way, they could only drink beer wherever they found it, and their target was the national police and the regular army oldiers and even the private security guards committed to the president Kabila. Down the city, the regular police could not face them, they all run away leaving behind their uniforms, boots, and even guns. They left the
communes and the containers empty. so Bemba's guys went up to Ndolo airport which was very open because all the soldiers living there run away. They went to our hungar as they thought some soldiers might have hidden their in. But there was only two of our guards, They started shooting inside the hangar, at least 15 bullets, they destroy the wall and one door. God is good, our guards were not hurt, not even the planes. So they asked them to open the gate and they did. they asked if Kabila's soldiers were inside and they also asked about their tribes; good for them because the two were from equateur (Bemba's province) and they said to them, we can not kill you bcs
you are our brothers and they left. I suppose that if they were from the East of the country, it could be another story.
We think that it is not the end because those guys left and we don't know exactly were they are for the moment. It seems some have crossed the river to Brazzaville, some are still in Kinshasa. After all something may happen. but the regular army is determined to finish with them.
Quote:
OCHA/DRC
Humanitarian SitRep : Kinshasa
22-27 March 2007
1. Context
On 22 March, 2007, fighting erupted between Government forces and the DPP (armed
elements loyal to former VP Bemba) in the Gombe area of Kinshasa. Tensions had been on
the rise in recent weeks as a result of Bemba’s defiance of a Government order for the DPP
to disarm and present for “brassage”.
Clashes were intense in the city centre (Gombe), with heavy weaponry being used on both
sides including heavy shelling and continuous gunfire. The fighting gradually progressed
towards other neighbourhoods including Barumbu, Kinshasa, Lingwala, Limete and Lakamu.
By 24th March, Government forces had regained control of the city, and DPP elements were
surrendering to MONUC at various locations around the city. However, the axis Ndolo –
Beach area remains unstable.
2. Current Situation
As of 27 March, evaluation and assistance activities of various humanitarian organisations
continue throughout the city. To date, the available facts and figures are as follows:
- Official casualty figures have yet to be released by the Government. Humanitarian
actors providing assistance in the different medical facilities report the following
estimates: 36 deaths registered in 4 hospitals in the city; 172 others registered at the
municipal morgue; 12 other bodies were found yesterday at Kinsuka. A further 147
individuals are registered at these same hospitals with combat-related injuries.
- 200 DPP elements have surrendered to MONUC. By agreement with the
Government, MONUC is providing safe haven to 100 of these elements and 260
women and children family members.
- Although damages are still being assessed, no major destruction affected health
centres, water facilities, power plants, educational structures or other essential public
service infrastructure.
3. Protection concerns
Humanitarian organizations are monitoring a number of protection-related issues and
situations including:
- families and dependents of captured/surrendered DPPs,
- treatment by authorities of arrested street-children,
- suspected risk of sexual violence and human rights abuses, and
- the alleged exactions and arbitrary executions taking place in the city and in
retaliation of DPP supporters
4. Humanitarian Evaluations and Assistance
Given the nature of the armed confrontations, the main concern in terms of emergency
needs were those regarding the capacity of health facilities and appropriate medical
treatment for the wounded. The following is a list of activities that have taken place to date,
under the general coordination of the Ministry of Health:
- Caritas:
o Evaluation of all hospitals in Gombe as well as the Morgue
o Distribution of 300 litres of formol, antibiotics, disinfectants,
o Distribution of food rations for 1000 individuals,
o Caritas is planning, in collaboration with the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs,
to make a further distribution of medical kits, surgical equipment and further
food rations.
o Finally, they expect to deliver 250 coffins and 2 sheets per injured
- WHO:
o Distribution of 3 tonnes of essential drugs and surgical materials
o Distribution of 400 rolls of plaster and 100 sheets
- ICRC and MSF:
o Both organizations divided themselves the hospitals in the city in order to
evaluate casualties and provide assistance
o Assistance included surgical support, provision of surgical equipment,
medicines, antibiotic, plastic bags, etc
- UNICEF: UNICEF has been evaluating the situation of street-children and that of the
minor dependents of DPP elements currently sheltered by MONUC.
5. Issues to Watch
- DPP arms have reportedly fallen into the hands of street children (shegué), raising
concerns about the presence of uncontrolled arms in the city;
- There are fears of reprisals by governmental forces against alleged DPP supporters
and sympathisers.
- There is a high potential for exacerbation of ethnic tensions (lingalophones vs.
swahiliphones)
Since the end of this fighting Bemba was held up in the South African Embassy. He was escorted from the embassy and is now in exile in Portugal.
But the good news is that Belgian Foreign Minister has called for a reform of the DRC's armed forces so that further incidents will be avoided.


And if you believe that last part, I have water front property in Gombe I want to sell you.

Tom
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