LRA Rebels Murder 321 Villagers in DR Congo, 250 Abducted

March 28, 2010

(ChattahBox)—The BBC has uncovered a remote village in the DR Congo, where a massacre took place in December, leaving at least 321 dead and 250 villagers abducted. The murders were committed by fighters from the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), a notorious militia group originating in Uganda that now spreads mayhem and terror to neighboring countries. Human Rights Watch says this is one of the worst massacres carried out by the LRA. The stench of hundreds of bodies, hacked to death by the LRA, lingered for weeks. But the world is only hearing about the brutal deaths of men, women and children months later.

The United Nations deployed additional forces to area villages, after hearing rumors of a LRA attack in December, but the remote villages, deep in the forest were left unprotected. And the tiny Congo village of Mabanga Ya Talo paid the price.

According to the BBC report:

“On 13 December, a contingent of LRA rebels crossed the Uele river, before arriving at a market in the village of Mabanga Ya Talo. “Dressed in military uniforms, they pretended to be Congolese soldiers who had spent months in the forests and asked local people for food and other goods.They then asked people to carry the goods back to where they had crossed the river, and when the villagers refused, the rebels turned on them. Adults were attacked, captured, imprisoned in huts, then taken out and made to act as porters.”

“Anyone who was unable to keep up with the pace of the forced march was “left behind” – a euphemism for being tied up and battered to death with wooden stakes or killed with machetes and axes.Those who refused or tried to escape were also brutally killed.”

Many of the children of the village, were targeted by the LRA rebels. “At least 80 were taken by force – boys to become fighters, girls to be used as sex slaves by LRA combatants.”

The LRA has been on a reign of terror for 20 years, since their formation in Uganda, for the stated purpose of establishing a theocracy in Uganda based on the Biblical Ten Commandments. Now, the rebel group just seems to have a taste for killing.

Anneke van Woudenberg from Human Rights Watch believes the LRA’s is on a concerted campaign of revenge killings:

“Trying to understand the minds of the LRA combattants is just incredibly difficult. What it does seem to me is that they are deliberately maximising civilian deaths, that they are taking out revenge on the Congolese people. In a number of places they attacked there seemed no other objective except to kill people. Why they do this is not clear but it seems to me revenge attacks carried out on multiple occasions. This is planned, this is orchestrated.”

See the BBC for more.


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