New York – A new wave of rape and murder of civilians in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo by the rebel group M23 Movement is an echo of horrible past incidents, said UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday.
“What we are witnessing today in eastern DRC has strong echoes of similar events in the recent past,” Ban told a meeting of African government leaders on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York.
Ban said M23 rebels have committed serious human rights violations, recruiting hundreds of children to serve as combatants and sex slaves.
He called on African regional organisations to work out a response to the new situation in the DRC.
Armed rebel groups from various Central African countries fought in Congo’s eastern provinces a decade ago, inflicting death, rape and destruction in the area.
The M23 Movement, which mutinied against the Congolese army to form a separate force, had launched a campaign of terror that forced more than 200,000 people out of their villages and another 60,000 into neighbouring countries, the UN said. (dpa/NAN)