United Nations peacekeeping forces have recently discovered the bodies of 21 men, women, children and babies who were hacked to death or beheaded by members of the Ugandan Muslim terrorist group known as ADF-Nalu. The slaughter took place in the Democratic Republic Of Congo.
According to the U.N.:
“The victims, including women and children — the youngest of which is thought to have been only a few months old — were hacked to death on December 13 and 14.
“Three girls under 18 are reported to have been raped by the attackers and then beheaded. The mutilated and dismembered body of a child is said to have been found in a tree, in the village of Musuku.”
The ADF-Nalu group stands for Allied Democratic Forces-National Army for the Liberation of Uganda and is considered the only Islamist group this area of the Congo. It is run by Jamil Mukulu, a supposed “Christian” who converted to Islam.
According to a Brussels-based think tank International Crisis Group, this terrorist organization “… has shown remarkable resilience attributable to its geostrategic position, its successful integration into the cross-border economy and corruption in the security forces.”
It is feared that ADF-Nalu will become as major link in the growing numbers of Islamist groups operating in East Africa.
Children among the victims of a savage attack in Democratic Republic of Congo
UN peacekeeping mission reports on attack of ‘extreme brutality in which 21 people were hacked to death including women and children in latest wave of violence in DR Congo
The bodies of at least 21 people have been found after a grisly attack in eastern DR Congo in which several women and children were raped, mutilated and beheaded, the UN peacekeeping mission said Monday.
The UN mission MONUSCO said the victims, including a baby, were hacked to death in an attack of “extreme brutality” in a wave of violence in North Kivu last week.
A local civil society organisation blamed the rampage on the Muslim Ugandan rebel group ADF-Nalu, one of the oldest but least known armed organisations based in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
“The victims, including women and children – the youngest of which is thought to have been only a few months old – were hacked to death on December 13 and 14,” the MONUSCO statement said.
“Three girls under 18 are reported to gave been raped by the attackers and then beheaded. The mutilated and dismembered body of a child is said to have been found in a tree, in the village of Musuku.”
MONUSCO chief Martin Kobler expressed his “deep disgust” at the attack.
“These atrocities will not go unpunished,” he vowed in the statement.
The UN peacekeeping force, one of the world’s largest, has been tracking down armed groups in the region in recent months but did not provide details on who the attackers might be.
However, the North Kivu Civil Society umbrella organisation swiftly issued a statement charging that “the carnage was perpetrated by ADF-Nalu’s Ugandan rebels”.
The group urged MONUSCO to urgently launch a military operation against the rebels, which has been based in the mountainous area near the Ugandan border since its creation in 1995.
The UN mission said in its statement that an investigation had been opened and reinforcements dispatched to protect the civilian population in the area.
A special intervention brigade with an unprecedented offensive mandate last month helped the Congolese army clinch a rare triumph by crushing the Rwanda-backed M23 rebel outfit.
The unit last week set its sights on the FDLR, a Rwandan rebel group that includes the remnants of the militia who carried out the 1994 genocide and whose continued existence has poisoned relations between Kigali and Kinshasa for years.
The UN intervention brigade has promised to rid the Kivu region, which includes some of the continent’s most impenetrable jungles, of the dozens of shady armed groups and criminal gangs that have been active there for years.
Speaking last week from Goma after announcing that operations against the FDLR had begun, MONUSCO force Commander Carlos Alberto Dos Santos Cruz said ADF-Nalu was next on the list.
ADF-Nalu stands for Allied Democratic Forces-National Army for the Liberation of Uganda and is considered the only Islamist organisation in the region.
In a report released a year ago, the Brussels-based think tank International Crisis Group said the group “has shown remarkable resilience attributable to its geostrategic position, its successful integration into the cross-border economy and corruption in the security forces”.
The group is led by Jamil Mukulu, a Christian convert to Islam, and has never really managed to take its fight against Yoweri Museveni’s regime to Uganda.
Some observers have voiced concern that ADF-Nalu could become a link in the growing network of radical Islamist groups in East Africa.