IRIN Update 452 4-6 July 98.7.6

IRIN Update 452 4-6 July 98.7.6

N A T I O N S Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs Integrated Regional Information Network for Central and Eastern Africa

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IRIN Update No. 452 for Central and Eastern Africa (Saturday-Monday 4-6 July 1998)

UGANDA: Army relocates base to eastern DRC

The Ugandan army has relocated its tactical headquarters in the west to neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo to try and wipe out rebels operating in the Ruwenzori mountains, the state-owned 'New Vision' reported on Saturday. It said the base had been moved from Kiraro in Kasese district to Ntabi in the DRC. Last week Ntabi, which served as rear base for Allied Democratic Forces rebels, was overrun by the Ugandan army although most of the rebels managed to flee.

Kony returns to Sudan

Joseph Kony, leader of another rebel group the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA), has returned to his rear bases in Sudan after earlier entering Uganda, the 'Sunday Vision' reported. According to the paper, his group took with it several abductees, including five schoolgirls. The paper said the return to Sudan was due to "mounting pressure" by the Ugandan army. Meanwhile, the 'New Vision' today (Monday) reported that five Ugandan rebel groups had met in Khartoum to form a joint leadership. It said they included the LRA, the Ugandan National Rescue Front II (UNRF-2), the West Nile Bank Front, the ADF and a new group the former Uganda National Army (FUNA) which was reportedly launched last month.

74 deaths confirmed after clashes near Kenyan border

At least 74 people were confirmed dead after heavy fighting between ethnic communities inside Ugandan territory last week, Kenyan KTN television reported on Friday. It said violence broke out after Kenyan Pokot cattle raiders crossed into Ugandan territory and clashes ensued with Karamojong warriors there. West Pokot District Commissioner Nathan Hiribae was quoted as saying 36 "heavily-armed" Pokots and 38 Karamojong died. According to AFP, Kenyan Rift Valley Provicincial Commissioner Francis Baya said peace meetings would soon be convened between the two sides.

Over 2,000 homeless in flash floods

Flash flooding in Kyoga county of Lira district has left 2,200 homeless, according to a preliminary assessment by the local government. Disaster Preparedness Minister Paul Etiang has appealed for urgent food and shelter assistance. WFP told IRIN it was unknown to what extent non-food relief items were needed, but it was planning to send a month's supply pending a more in-depth evaluation.

EU to help relocate elephants

The EU has offered US $250,000 worth of assistance to Uganda to help flush out elephants disrupting the lives of residents in Luwero district, Ugandan radio reported. The aid will be used to relocate the elephants into national parks, Tourism Minister Brigadier Moses Ali was reported as saying. An expert from Zimbabwe is due in Uganda to help with the operation.

SUDAN: Alleged bomb suspects detained

The Sudanese interior ministry announced late Friday that those involved in a string of bomb attacks in Khartoum last week have been detained, AFP reported. According to the ministry, security officials rounded up a number of suspects and obtained full confessions. President Omar al-Bashir meanwhile has accused opposition members of being behind the attacks which targeted power and other vital installations. The Cairo branch of the Sudanese Human Rights Organisation (SHRO) issued a list of those it says are detained by the Khartoum authorities. They were questioned "about their opinion of the new constitution and their refusal to work within the governmental organisations". The SHRO called for the immediate release of detainees and for those accused to be brought to trial.

RWANDA: Government pledges to clear social security fund debt

The government has pledged to clear a debt of US $100 million owed to the national social security fund, the Rwanda News Agency reported. Labour Minister Dr Joseph Nsengimana made the announcement last week during a conference on the structural adjustment programme. RNA said the debt was inherited from the previous regime. During the conference, workers had attacked the government for endorsing a three-year economic reform programme without consulting their unions.

Kagame calls for non-ethnic democracy

On Saturday, Rwanda celebrated the fourth anniversary of Kigali's liberation with a call by Vice-President Paul Kagame to build a democracy "based on people and not on ethnicity". According to RNA, he condemned "those who want us to move backwards". At a rally, he called for "sweeping away the political dirt in our country". In his speech, President Pasteur Bizimungu took issue with corruption, laziness, incompetence, genocide ideology and the justice system. He said those "who think the liberation was carried out for them alone are wrong as are those who think the liberation does not concern them".

First part of French genocide probe concludes

The French parliamentary information mission on France's role in the 1994 genocide is to conclude the first part of its work, the French daily 'Liberation' said on Friday. Since March, the mission has heard 72 testimonies and received more than 20,000 documents, the daily added. In an interview with the newspaper, the mission's president and former defence minister Paul Quiles said they had "always obtained the requested documents - confidential and even secret". The mission had already acquired significant confidential information on French policy in Rwanda between 1990 and 1994.

Last week 'Liberation' quoted the historian Gerard Prunier as saying France had "contributed to the feasibility of the genocide" by being manipulated by the then- president Juvenal Habyarimana. Prunier described the genocide as the "ultimate failure" of France's African policy.

Nairobi, 6 July 1998, 14:30 gmt


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Date: Mon, 6 Jul 1998 17:42:21 +0300 (GMT+0300) From: IRIN - Central and Eastern Africa <> Subject: Central and Eastern Africa: IRIN Update 452 4-6 July 98.7.6 Message-ID: <>

Editor: Dr. Ali B. Ali-Dinar, Ph.D

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