DRC: clashes have resumed between the army and the M23

DRC: clashes have resumed between the army and the M23 Units of the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo form a security belt to secure the Kiwanja airfield.  After a week of calm, fighting between the army and the M23 rebel movement resumed on Wednesday in the province of North Kivu, in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo,  The M23, also called the "Congolese Revolutionary Army", was defeated in 2013 by the army but reappeared at the end of last year, accusing the Kinshasa authorities of not having respected commitments to demobilize its fighters.  On March 28 and 29, he came out of his high altitude bastions to come and attack army positions, in particular at Runyoni and Tchanzu, a region where eight blue helmets died in the still unexplained crash of their helicopter.  After two days of heavy fighting, which caused the flight of tens of thousands of villagers towards the center of Rutshuru and towards Uganda, the rebels declared a unilateral ceasefire, claiming to want a peaceful settlement of the crisis between them and the government.  Since then, the army has sent reinforcements to the region and the frightened population expected a resumption of fighting, refusing to return to the villages occupied by the rebellion.       Ethiopia: NGOs denounce crimes against humanity in Tigray Amhara militia men walk with their guns amid a crowd of pilgrims in the Amhara region, bordering the Tigray region, on January 6, 2022.  Security forces in Ethiopia's northern Amhara region and their partners are waging a "campaign of ethnic cleansing" in the neighboring Tigray region, where they are committing abuses amounting to war crimes and crimes against humanity, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said in a new report released on Wednesday.  Western Tigray authorities and their allies have also committed massacres and other war crimes against Amhara civilians, the two human rights organizations said.  Since the start of the Tigray War in November 2020, “ Amhara security forces have engaged in a relentless campaign of ethnic violence to force Tigrayans in western Tigray to flee their homes ,” Kennet Roth warned. , director of HRW.  According to the investigation, these crimes took place with the consent and even possibly the direct collaboration of the federal security forces. However, both the Ethiopian federal forces and the Ahmara authorities deny allegations of ethnic cleansing in western Tigray.  After interviewing more than 400 people and analyzing medical reports, satellite images, videos and photographs, the two NGOs documented, among other abuses, threats, murders, gang rapes, mass arbitrary arrests, looting, forced displacement and denial of humanitarian aid. As a result, tens of thousands of Tigers were driven from their homes or fled.  Amnesty International and HRW estimate that thousands of Tigrayans are still being held in life-threatening conditions. However, they point out, the central government has restricted access to the region and to independent investigations, thereby covering up many of these human rights violations.  " The response from Ethiopia's international and regional partners is not commensurate with the gravity of the crimes that continue to be committed in Western Tigray, " said Agnès Callamard, Secretary General of Amnesty International.   The two human rights organizations demanded that the Ethiopian government ensure immediate and sustained access for humanitarian organizations in Tigray, release all those arbitrarily detained, and investigate and prosecute those responsible for the abuses. . Furthermore, they called on the parties to the armed conflict to conclude an agreement providing for " the dispatch of an international peacekeeping force led by the African Union (AU) to the Western Tigray region in order to guarantee the protection of all communities against abuse ".  Tigray is a fertile region which, two weeks after the start of the war in 2020, fell under the control of the Ethiopian federal army and the Amhara militia allied with the Ethiopian government. The war began on November 4, 2020 , when Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed ordered an offensive against the ruling Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), in response to an attack on a federal military base and following an escalation of political tensions.  According to the United Nations, some 5.2 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance in Tigray and neighboring Amhara and Afar regions. Thousands of people have been killed and some two million have been forced to flee their homes due to the violence.  On March 24, the Ethiopian government declared an "indefinite humanitarian truce", ending a " de facto blockade " that had been in place in Tigray for months, according to the United Nations.

Units of the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo form a security belt to secure the Kiwanja airfield.

After a week of calm, fighting between the army and the M23 rebel movement resumed on Wednesday in the province of North Kivu, in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo,

The M23, also called the "Congolese Revolutionary Army", was defeated in 2013 by the army but reappeared at the end of last year, accusing the Kinshasa authorities of not having respected commitments to demobilize its fighters.

On March 28 and 29, he came out of his high altitude bastions to come and attack army positions, in particular at Runyoni and Tchanzu, a region where eight blue helmets died in the still unexplained crash of their helicopter.

After two days of heavy fighting, which caused the flight of tens of thousands of villagers towards the center of Rutshuru and towards Uganda, the rebels declared a unilateral ceasefire, claiming to want a peaceful settlement of the crisis between them and the government.

Since then, the army has sent reinforcements to the region and the frightened population expected a resumption of fighting, refusing to return to the villages occupied by the rebellion.

Ethiopia: NGOs denounce crimes against humanity in Tigray

Amhara militia men walk with their guns amid a crowd of pilgrims in the Amhara region, bordering the Tigray region, on January 6, 2022.

Security forces in Ethiopia's northern Amhara region and their partners are waging a "campaign of ethnic cleansing" in the neighboring Tigray region, where they are committing abuses amounting to war crimes and crimes against humanity, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said in a new report released on Wednesday.

Western Tigray authorities and their allies have also committed massacres and other war crimes against Amhara civilians, the two human rights organizations said.

Since the start of the Tigray War in November 2020, “ Amhara security forces have engaged in a relentless campaign of ethnic violence to force Tigrayans in western Tigray to flee their homes ,” Kennet Roth warned. , director of HRW.

According to the investigation, these crimes took place with the consent and even possibly the direct collaboration of the federal security forces. However, both the Ethiopian federal forces and the Ahmara authorities deny allegations of ethnic cleansing in western Tigray.

After interviewing more than 400 people and analyzing medical reports, satellite images, videos and photographs, the two NGOs documented, among other abuses, threats, murders, gang rapes, mass arbitrary arrests, looting, forced displacement and denial of humanitarian aid. As a result, tens of thousands of Tigers were driven from their homes or fled.

Amnesty International and HRW estimate that thousands of Tigrayans are still being held in life-threatening conditions. However, they point out, the central government has restricted access to the region and to independent investigations, thereby covering up many of these human rights violations.

" The response from Ethiopia's international and regional partners is not commensurate with the gravity of the crimes that continue to be committed in Western Tigray, " said Agnès Callamard, Secretary General of Amnesty International.

The two human rights organizations demanded that the Ethiopian government ensure immediate and sustained access for humanitarian organizations in Tigray, release all those arbitrarily detained, and investigate and prosecute those responsible for the abuses. . Furthermore, they called on the parties to the armed conflict to conclude an agreement providing for " the dispatch of an international peacekeeping force led by the African Union (AU) to the Western Tigray region in order to guarantee the protection of all communities against abuse ".

Tigray is a fertile region which, two weeks after the start of the war in 2020, fell under the control of the Ethiopian federal army and the Amhara militia allied with the Ethiopian government. The war began on November 4, 2020 , when Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed ordered an offensive against the ruling Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), in response to an attack on a federal military base and following an escalation of political tensions.

According to the United Nations, some 5.2 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance in Tigray and neighboring Amhara and Afar regions. Thousands of people have been killed and some two million have been forced to flee their homes due to the violence.

On March 24, the Ethiopian government declared an "indefinite humanitarian truce", ending a " de facto blockade " that had been in place in Tigray for months, according to the United Nations.
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