DRC: M23 accuses the government of violating the ceasefire and killing civilians

DRC: M23 accuses the government of violating the ceasefire and killing civilians

In a statement on Wednesday, the rebel movement accused the Congolese army of allying with armed groups including the Mai-Mai and FDLR to kill civilians. It warns of “a genocide in progress” and affirms that “we will not stand by idly while civilians are continually massacred”. INFO SOS Médias Burundi

The M23 says there is an ongoing genocide and summary abuses perpetrated by the government coalition.

The rebel group accused to have massacred at least 272 civilians last week, says the Congolese army and its allies attacked its posts in and around Bwiza “in total violation of the ongoing ceasefire”.

“This coalition has started killing innocent civilians, destroying their homes, looting and decapitating their cattle in the worst form of sabotage”, charges the rebel movement, adding that “these attacks have caused several injuries and internal displacement”.

The former Tutsi rebellion which took up arms again at the end of 2021 accusing Congolese authorities of not having respected its commitments on the reintegration of its fighters is further incriminating.

“It should be noted that these targeted killings of Tutsis and those who reject the genocide ideology […], while the national and international community remains silent, brings us back to the time before the 1994 genocide perpetrated against Tutsis in Rwanda by one of the privileged partners of the Kinshasa government…”.

The M23, in its press release, challenges the United Nations Security Council, the European Union and African Union, the EAC among others.

It asks them to “act immediately against this ongoing genocide” while inviting international organizations to “intervene and bring assistance to displaced families whose number exceeds six thousand who have found refuge in the areas under our control”.

The statement signed by Lawrence Kanyuka, political spokesperson for the M23, concludes by saying that “the M23 will not stand by idly while civilians are being continuously massacred”, insisting that it is ready to “intervene in order to stop these horrible massacres”.

The press statement was released at a time when the Congolese justice minister was received by the prosecutor of the ICC (International Criminal Court) in The Hague to discuss the case of the Kishishe massacre, blamed on the March 23 movement ( M23) and in Rwanda. The Congolese government announced on Monday that at least 272 civilians were killed, including 17 children, in the “carnage”.

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