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Midterm report of the Group of Experts on the Democratic Republic of the Congo


Sharp, Michael J; Behalal, Zobel; Catalán, Zaida; Sollazzo, Roberto; Vogel, Christoph; Zounmenou, David (2016). Midterm report of the Group of Experts on the Democratic Republic of the Congo. New York: United Nations.

Abstract

Since the submission of the previous report (S/2016/466), in May 2016, the overall security situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo has not improved. Recent months were characterized by an increase in political tension owing to the de facto postponement of the national elections initially scheduled for December 2016. This led to protests on 19 September, during which dozens of civilians were killed or arrested in the capital, Kinshasa. While there was a political dialogue between the Government and some opposition groups, the risk of further election- related violence remains.
Foreign armed groups remained active in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Forces démocratiques de libération du Rwanda continued to pose a threat to the security of North Kivu. The group was seriously weakened, however, by continuing military operations and an internal split that led to the loss of one third to one half of its members to the newly created Conseil national pour le renouveau et la démocratie-Ubwiyunge. Both of these groups collaborated with local armed groups, such as Nyatura.
The Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) continued to operate in Beni territory and recruited nationals of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda and Uganda in 2016. At least one group within ADF attacked civilians in the period under review.
The Group notes that efforts to launch gold traceability programmes have not yet become operational. Meanwhile, gold remains by far the mineral most used to finance armed elements and criminal networks. A positive development was the launch of investigations into the involvement in natural resources of some Congolese military officers previously mentioned in the Group’s reports for such involvement. Nevertheless, some senior officers continue to be implicated in gold exploitation and trade, on occasion in collaboration with private companies.
Challenges in fully implementing due diligence in the tin, tantalum and tungsten sector remain a threat to the positive developments noted by the Group in previous reports. While traceability and certification processes are expanding, armed actors do occasionally interfere in sites certified as conflict free.
The Garamba National Park continued to be the main source of trafficking in ivory, although elephant poaching in general is diminishing as a source of financing for the Lord’s Resistance Army.
The Group remains concerned about the widespread violations of human rights and international humanitarian law in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In Beni territory, the killing of civilians, such as in a massacre in Rwangoma in August 2016, continued unabated. In addition, the tit-for-tat violence previously investigated by the Group in Lubero territory spread south into Rutshuru, involving some of the same dynamics and actors.
The crossing of armed members of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army in Opposition into the Democratic Republic of the Congo was a violation of the arms embargo. The Group also remains concerned about the persistent inefficiency of stockpile management and the challenges of marking the estimated 300,000 small arms in a timely manner. These deficiencies make it difficult to track weapons and ammunition diverted from government stocks to armed groups.

Abstract

Since the submission of the previous report (S/2016/466), in May 2016, the overall security situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo has not improved. Recent months were characterized by an increase in political tension owing to the de facto postponement of the national elections initially scheduled for December 2016. This led to protests on 19 September, during which dozens of civilians were killed or arrested in the capital, Kinshasa. While there was a political dialogue between the Government and some opposition groups, the risk of further election- related violence remains.
Foreign armed groups remained active in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Forces démocratiques de libération du Rwanda continued to pose a threat to the security of North Kivu. The group was seriously weakened, however, by continuing military operations and an internal split that led to the loss of one third to one half of its members to the newly created Conseil national pour le renouveau et la démocratie-Ubwiyunge. Both of these groups collaborated with local armed groups, such as Nyatura.
The Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) continued to operate in Beni territory and recruited nationals of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda and Uganda in 2016. At least one group within ADF attacked civilians in the period under review.
The Group notes that efforts to launch gold traceability programmes have not yet become operational. Meanwhile, gold remains by far the mineral most used to finance armed elements and criminal networks. A positive development was the launch of investigations into the involvement in natural resources of some Congolese military officers previously mentioned in the Group’s reports for such involvement. Nevertheless, some senior officers continue to be implicated in gold exploitation and trade, on occasion in collaboration with private companies.
Challenges in fully implementing due diligence in the tin, tantalum and tungsten sector remain a threat to the positive developments noted by the Group in previous reports. While traceability and certification processes are expanding, armed actors do occasionally interfere in sites certified as conflict free.
The Garamba National Park continued to be the main source of trafficking in ivory, although elephant poaching in general is diminishing as a source of financing for the Lord’s Resistance Army.
The Group remains concerned about the widespread violations of human rights and international humanitarian law in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In Beni territory, the killing of civilians, such as in a massacre in Rwangoma in August 2016, continued unabated. In addition, the tit-for-tat violence previously investigated by the Group in Lubero territory spread south into Rutshuru, involving some of the same dynamics and actors.
The crossing of armed members of the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army in Opposition into the Democratic Republic of the Congo was a violation of the arms embargo. The Group also remains concerned about the persistent inefficiency of stockpile management and the challenges of marking the estimated 300,000 small arms in a timely manner. These deficiencies make it difficult to track weapons and ammunition diverted from government stocks to armed groups.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Published Research Report
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Geography
Dewey Decimal Classification:910 Geography & travel
Language:English
Date:28 December 2016
Deposited On:16 Jan 2018 14:32
Last Modified:30 Jul 2018 05:32
Publisher:United Nations
Number of Pages:90
Additional Information:Security Council S/2016/1102
OA Status:Green
Free access at:Official URL. An embargo period may apply.
Official URL:http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=S/2016/1102

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