AP - Rebel groups in eastern Congo are illegally imposing taxes on trucks and pedestrians and receiving local, regional and international support in violation of U.N. sanctions, U.N. experts said Thursday.
A UN expert pushed Monday for the prosecution of leaders of rebel groups for the mass rape of civilians in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, saying urgent action was needed "before the trail goes cold."Margot Wallstrom, UN special representative on the prevention of sexual violence in conflict, singled out the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) and the Mai-Mai militia."The FDLR has time and again been responsible for grave human rights violations in the DRC. Accountability must begin with the commanders of these and other groups," she said.
ALEPPO, Syria — When the jihadist group Jabhat al-Nusra announced it was joining al-Qaeda, Syrians in rebel-held territories cringed. “Now everyone will think our revolution is nothing but a jihadist power grab,” complained 28-year-old Muhammad Ansari. “Who will support us now?”
With the Syrian revolution faltering and secular rebel groups disintegrating amid infighting and civilian abuses, it is the jihadists who have benefitted most. Syrians believe these groups have hijacked a secular revolution.
BANGUI, Central African Republic — Rebels overthrew Central African Republic’s president of a decade on Sunday, seizing the presidential palace and declaring that the desperately poor country has “opened a new page in its history.” The country’s president fled the capital, while extra French troops moved to secure the airport, officials said.
Amid one of the the world’s most troubled regions, Simon Village maintains that it is business as usual for his company.
All the same, he will admit to being a little alarmed by recent events near his operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
“If you remember, the M23 were just sitting in the bushes north of Goma. And then, all of a sudden, they were in Goma. It caught people by surprise,” the chief executive of gold miner Banro Corp. said in a phone interview from the DRC.
Derik, Syria — As the civil war in Syria grinds on, one of the less-noticed developments has been the emergence of a de facto Kurdish autonomous area in the country’s northeast.
Stretching across a chain of towns and villages, from the border with Iraq to the disputed town of Sere Kaniyeh (Ras al-Ain in Arabic), this Kurdish-ruled region is seeking to carve out an enclave between regime and rebels.
The relative calm of the early morning was shattered Tuesday in Goma, the chief city in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, when heavy fighting resumed between rebel groups and the Congolese army, witnesses said.