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EU criticizes hate speech and FARDC cooperation with FDLR

The European Union (EU) has condemned the continued alliance between the DR Congo national army, FARDC, with the genocidal force, FDLR, and called on Kinshasa to put a halt to the collusion.EU criticizes hate speech and FARDC cooperation with FDLR

The call was made by the high representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell Fontelles, in a statement issued on Saturday while reacting to the recent report by a UN Group of Experts on DR Congo.

 

The statement reads in part that the EU “calls on the DRC to stop and prevent any cooperation between the FARDC and armed groups, notably the FDLR, and to take all measures necessary to protect the civilian population in its territory.”

The development comes a few weeks after the EU sanctioned FDLR top commander, Protogene Ruvugayimikore, over atrocities in DR Congo. Also on the sanctions list is Joseph Nganzo Olikwa Tipi, an FARDC commander also known as Colonel Tipi Ziro Ziro, Joseph Ngadjole, Joseph Nganzole Olikwa.

For long, Rwanda expressed concerns over the alliance between FARDC and FDLR which has also been mentioned in several reports by international bodies.

On several occasions, the DR Congo army and the FDLR have shelled on Rwandan territory killing innocent civilians and destroying properties.

Over the years, FDLR has conducted attacks on Rwanda while several FARDC soldiers attempted to cross into Rwanda shooting.

“The EU reiterates its support for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of all countries in the region and strongly condemns any support to local or foreign armed groups,” reads Fontelles’ statement.

The EU also reaffirmed its support to the Luanda and Nairobi processes and called on all parties to rapidly implement the decisions taken within their frame.

 

Part of the decisions include the roadmap on the pacification process in the eastern region of DR Congo and a timeframe set by Luanda mini-Summit on Peace and Security held on November 23 that included a deadline for the disarmament and repatriation of the FDLR which has since not been acted on by the DR Congo government.

Hate speech

The EU also condemned in the strongest terms xenophobia, hate speech and incitement to violence targeting Kinyarwanda-speaking Congolese and called for those responsible to be brought to justice.

 

The UN group of experts said they had documented “a worrying proliferation of xenophobia and hate speech inciting discrimination, hostility, and violence,” targeting Kinyarwanda-speaking populations, in particular, the Banyamulenge and Tutsi communities, who are accused of supporting the M23.

In November, the UN special advisor on genocide prevention, Alice Wairimu Nderitu, said the violence in eastern DR Congo was “a warning sign” in a region with genocide history.

EU criticizes hate speech and FARDC cooperation with FDLR
EU criticizes hate speech and FARDC cooperation with FDLR

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