DRC ethnic massacre by CODECO: Children killed by machetes
Kanako Mita and Sawako Utsumi
Modern Tokyo Times
The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is blighted by ethnic and religious massacres that are never-ending. Thus the latest suspected massacre by militiamen linked to CODECO is a grim reminder of the severity of the crisis in this nation.
CODECO militiamen used machetes to kill 14 people. The victims include seven children – with the youngest being aged two.
Lee Jay Walker says, “The attack took place in the Ituri region. CODECO militiamen are a patchwork of various Lendu ethnic militia groups. Factions are common. Therefore, the only early binding theme were attacks against the Hema tribe, reclaiming land from the Hema, and seeking to end the exploitation of local resources by foreign nationals and companies.”
A local community worker in the Djugu region of Ituri, Jean D’Zba Banju, notified Associated Foreign Press that “CODECO militiamen entered Drakpa and started to cut people with machetes. They did not fire shots in order to operate calmly.”
The regions of North Kivu and Ituri face endless ethnic and religious massacres. Uganda sent its armed forces in to crush the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) that operate in this part of the DRC. However, despite peace overtures – to military attacks against various militias and the ADF – civilians continue to die in high numbers throughout the provinces of North Kivu and Ituri.
Reuters reports, “Open conflict between Hema and Lendu from 1999-2007 resulted in an estimated 50,000 deaths in one of the bloodiest chapters of a civil war in eastern Congo that left millions dead from conflict, hunger and disease.”
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