Fear over UN experts’ whereabouts in DRC

MONUSCOFrom JEAN KASSONGO in Kinshasa, DRC
KINSHASA, (CAJ News) – THERE is no word on United Nations experts and their assistants that disappeared more than two weeks ago while investigating widespread human rights abuses in a region beset by clashes between government forces and militia in Democratic Republic of Congo.
The experts, Michael Sharp, an American; Zaida Catalán, a Swede; Betu Tshintela, a Congolese interpreter; Isaac Kabuayi, a driver; and two unidentified motorbike drivers, were last seen on March 12 near the remote village of Bunkonde, south of the Kasai Cenytral capital, Kananga.
A day later, DRC officials announced the experts had “fallen into the hands of unidentified negative forces,” but have provided no additional information.
The UN peacekeeping mission in Congo (MONUSCO) deployed Uruguayan peacekeepers and Tanzanian special forces on a search and rescue operation for the missing people but efforts have suffered from a lack of cooperation from the Congolese government.
Rights groups have expressed worry about the missing UN team.
“The Congolese government should cooperate fully with the UN and other international investigators to do all they can to bring the team back safely,” said Ida Sawyer, Central Africa director at Human Rights Watch.
More than 400 civilians and 67 police have been killed and more than 200 000 displaced from their homes since large-scale violence erupted in the Kasai region last August.

CAJ News

Short URL: http://cajnewsafrica.com/?p=18974

Posted by on Mar 28 2017. Filed under Africa & World, Featured, National, News, Regional. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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