Former president Uhuru calls for cessation of hostilities in DRC North Kivu region

Former president Uhuru calls for cessation of hostilities in DRC North Kivu region

Former President Uhuru Kenyatta has expressed concern about the rapidly deteriorating situation in the Eastern DRC's North Kivu region, where fighting has erupted between various armed groups, including the Armed Forces of the Republic of Congo (FARDC) and the M23.

In a statement issued by the Office of the Retired President (ORP), Uhuru urged the DRC government and the international community to increase their assistance to IDPs displaced by the conflict.

Amidst reports of targeted civilian killings by armed groups and thousands of internally displaced people as a result of the two days of fighting in the area, the former head of state also called for an end to all hostilities and adherence to the Luanda and Nairobi Peace process Agreements.

In the most recent attack, suspected Allied Democratic Forces fighters  killed at least 23 people in eastern DR Congo. 

According to local civil society leader Roger Wangeve, the attack happened overnight on Sunday in the village of Makugwe in the Beni region of North Kivu province. Wangeve put the death toll at 24.

"The ADF surprised 17 people in a small bar where they were drinking beer, and executed them," he said.

A Congolese army spokesman in the region put the death toll at 24 with 10 people missing.

Wangeve added that militants also looted and torched several homes and shops in the village and carried off several villagers into the bush.

The ADF is one of the deadliest groups in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, a volatile region which has been plagued by militia violence for decades.

The ADF has been accused of slaughtering thousands of Congolese civilians and carrying out bomb attacks in Uganda.

In 2021, the United States officially linked the ADF to IS and added it to its list of foreign terrorist organisations.

On January 15, suspected ADF operatives detonated a bomb in a church in North Kivu, killing at least 14 people and injuring another 63.

Congolese President Felix Tshisekedi placed North Kivu and neighbouring Ituri province in a "state of siege" in 2021, replacing civilian administrators with military and police personnel in a bid to stem the violence.


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