from JEAN KASSONGO in Kinshasa, DRC
KINSHASA, (CAJ News) – CORRUPT soldiers within the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (FARDC) are reportedly equipping rebel groups with arms and ammunition, much to the deteriorating situation in the country.
The development is not only strengthening rebel groups in the clashes with the army but means the national army is playing a role in worsening conflicts between the factionalised militia groups.
Nduma Defense of the DRC (NDC-R) is the beneficiary of arms and ammunition provided by some soldiers, the United Nations Group of Experts on the DRC told the Security Council.
The experts noted NDC-R had in 2019 been involved increased armed clashes with the rival rebel group, the Collective of Movements for Change (CMC) particularly in the volatile and Ebola-affected North Kivu Province.
NDC-R continued to recruit and expand while its leader, Guidon Shimiray Mwissa, is on the sanctions list of the Security Council Committee and is subject to a Congolese arrest warrant.
In another development marring the image of the military, UN experts report that security forces are involved in the illicit production of and trade in minerals.
Other rebel groups fingered in the natural resources controversy include NDC-R, Mai-Mai Yakutumba and Nyatura factions.
Another rebel group, the Allied Democratic Forces also remained a serious threat to peace and stability with continued attacks on civilians and army positions.
Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) also claimed some recent terror attacks in the northeastern town of Beni.
The terror undermines the government of President Felix Tshisekedi that was inaugurated at the beginning of 2019.
– CAJ News