UN condemns recent deadly armed group attacks in eastern DR Congo

© UNICEF/Arlette Bashizi Beni, a city in North Kivu in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

UN News UN Secretary-General António Guterres has welcomed the decision by the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to investigate recent deadly attacks allegedly committed by the M23 armed group.

Mr. Guterres has strongly condemned the attacks, which occurred on 29 and 30 November in the villages of Kishishe and Bambo, located in Rutshuru territory, North Kivu province, in the volatile eastern part of the country

At least 131 civilians were killed, including 17 women and 12 children, and eight others were injured.

“The Secretary-General expresses his deepest condolences to the families of the victims and wishes a swift recovery to the injured,” UN Spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric said in a statement on Friday.

“He welcomes the decision of the Congolese authorities to investigate these incidents with a view to bringing those found responsible to justice.”

Meanwhile, the UN’s human rights office in the DRC, and its peacekeeping operation there, MONUSCO, will continue to support the government in these efforts.

“The Secretary-General urges the M23 and all other armed groups immediately cease hostilities and disarm unconditionally,” the statement continued.

Mr. Guterres also called on all parties to facilitate humanitarian access to affected communities and to ensure the protection of civilians and respect for international humanitarian law. 

He also underlined the UN’s ongoing commitment to support the Congolese government and people in their efforts to bring about peace and stability in the east of the country.

The attacks are the latest in a series of violence inflicted on civilians by armed groups in eastern DRC.

MONUSCO chief Bintou Keita briefed the UN Security Council in New York on Friday.

She told ambassadors that the security situation in eastern DRC “has deteriorated dramatically” in the past weeks.

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