Submit this form
Home News Videos Music Photos Facebook Twitter Newsletter Podcasts Mobile RSS
Government troops hunt for killers of UN peacekeepers


KINSHASA, 28 Feb 2005 (IRIN) - The first brigade of the integrated Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) began military operations on Monday, cracking down on armed groups in the northeastern district of Ituri, Defence Minister Adolphe Onusumba told IRIN.

"Killings like the one of nine blue helmets in Kafe village on Friday shall not be repeated," Onusumba said.

He was referring to the ambush of Bangladeshi UN peacekeepers in which militiamen killed nine of them and wounded 11 others.

Onusumba is heading a government delegation that is assessing the situation in Ituri.

"We want to make it clear to the armed groups that we fervently condemn such acts," he said. "From now on we will track them down - we will have them submit to the state authority and judicial process will follow suit."

He added that the killers of the UN troops had not yet been identified.

Belgian instructors trained the army brigade of about 3,000 men in Kisangani, the capital of Orientale Province. The brigade has been stationed in Ituri, but had not yet become operational when the killings occurred.

"The brigade will work hand in hand with the UN peacekeeping troops," Onusumba said.

Immediately after Friday's ambush, the UN Mission in the DRC, known as MONUC, reinforced its troops on the ground with the support of attack and transport helicopters, MONUC's chief of information, Kemal Saiki, said.

"Control and safety operations are underway in search of the assailants," Saiki said. "The premeditated attack follows numerous actions by MONUC in Ituri, which aimed to neutralise the militants who live on illegal revenues and looting and terrorising the population."

He said the nine peacekeepers killed were on foot patrol in two groups totalling 21 men.

Congolese Information Minister Henri Mova Sakanyi said a second brigade would be formed and deployed to Ituri.

However, an inquiry into who killed the UN peacekeepers is underway, he said.

On Friday in New York, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan appealed to all parties in the Congo to "refrain from all these sort of brutal acts".

He added: "We will continue our work and I would urge the Congolese government to work with us in tracking down the perpetrators of this brutal murder so they can be brought to account."

Annan said he was saddened by the death of the UN peacekeepers.

"I send my deepest sympathies to their families and to the government and to the people of Bangladesh," he said. "They are good peacekeepers, and I am sorry it had to end like this."

@Congoplanet |

Related articles

  1. 'Deadly environment' plus 'political and social' obstacles hinder Ebola fight, Security Council hears (July 24, 2019)
  2. Ebola outbreak declared an international Public Health Emergency (July 17, 2019)
  3. At least 30 dead after massacres in Ituri (March 2, 2018)
  4. ICC Confirms 14-Year Sentence Against Thomas Lubanga (December 1, 2014)
  5. ICC sentences Germain Katanga to 12 years (May 23, 2014)
  6. ICC finds Germain Katanga guilty of war crimes and crime against humanity (March 7, 2014)
  7. Bosco Ntaganda Attacked Civilians on Ethnic Grounds, ICC Prosecutor Says (February 10, 2014)
  8. Rebel Leader Bosco Ntaganda Makes First Appearence Before the ICC (March 26, 2013)
  9. Bosco Ntaganda in the International Criminal Court's custody (March 22, 2013)
  10. International Criminal Court Acquits Mathieu Ngudjolo Chui (December 18, 2012)
  11. Thousands of Women March Against M23 Rebels in Kinshasa (November 24, 2012)
  12. ICC Prosecutor Seeks 30 Years for Thomas Lubanga (June 13, 2012)
  13. ICC Prosecutor Seeks New Charges Against Ntaganda, FDLR Leader (May 14, 2012)
  14. Kabila's Position on The Arrest of Ntaganda 'Has Not Changed' (April 13, 2012)
  15. DR Congo Government Warns Bosco Ntaganda He May Face Justice (April 6, 2012)
  16. Thomas Lubanga found guilty of using child soldiers (March 14, 2012)
  17. Tshisekedi Says He Won, Can He Prove It? (December 17, 2011)
  18. Security Council extends mandate of UN mission in DR Congo (June 28, 2011)
  19. Rights Groups: Strengthen Civilian Protection Before Elections (June 9, 2011)
  20. Militiamen Sent to Testify in Warlords Trials at ICC (March 28, 2011)
  21. UN Sanctions FDLR Leaders, CNDP Rebel Commander Integrated into Army (December 2, 2010)
  22. UN launches patrols to head off rebel violence during holiday season (December 1, 2010)
  23. Congo Defense Minister Rejects UN Allegations against Army (October 17, 2010)
  24. Thomas Lubanga trial to resume at ICC (October 8, 2010)
  25. Rebel leader presumed responsible for mass rape arrested (October 5, 2010)
  26. UN DR Congo Report Exposes Grave Crimes (October 1, 2010)
  27. UN says peacekeepers 'failed' DR Congo rape victims (September 7, 2010)
  28. UN Defends Inaction on Mass Rapes in Eastern Congo, Government Missing in Action (August 26, 2010)
  29. Two Suspects Arrested in Attack on MONUSCO Base (August 20, 2010)
  30. Ban Ki-moon deplores deadly attack against blue helmets in North Kivu (August 18, 2010)

Live TV Congo Radio en ligne Radio
Available on App Store
Get it on Google Play

Contact Us | About Us | Édition en Français | French Edition

© All rights reserved.