AFRICA/CONGO DR -"Humanitarian catastrophe" in Katanga, says the UN

Monday, 3 February 2014

Kinshasa (Agenzia Fides) - A delegation of local notables is on a visit in northern Katanga (in the south of the Democratic Republic of Congo) to soothe the minds of the local population alarmed by the actions of the Bakata-Katanga group, responsible for the displacement of more than 500,000 people from 66 villages in the area (see Fides 30/01/2014).
Tension increases also due to the suspicions that behind the action of the group there seem to be some local politicians, interested in disturbing the political climate in view of the upcoming presidential elections in 2016. One of the tasks of the delegation of notables is to deny the rumors that are spreading, concerning those who influence the Bakata - Katanga; voices that contribute to sowing suspicion and hatred among the local populations.
The civil society organization of Katanga has long urged the authorities to bring to justice the persons named in a 2013 report.
According to Martin Kobler, head of the UN Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo ( MONUSCO), one is in the presence of a "humanitarian catastrophe" in Katanga caused by the violence of the Bakata-Katanga, particularly in the so-called "triangle of death" formed by the territories of Mitwaba, Manono, Pweto. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 03/02/2014)