Murder by remote control must be stopped

The recent arrest of Ignace Murwanashyaka and straton Musoni in Germany was an attempt towards resolving once the crisis in Eastern DR Congo. The common myth pervaded about the Congo crisis was that it was an unsolvable conflict with a tangled mess of militias, tribal warriors, mercenaries, UN peacekeepers with dirty hands and this problem could never be solved.

The recent arrest of Ignace Murwanashyaka and straton Musoni in Germany was an attempt towards resolving once the crisis in Eastern DR Congo.

The common myth pervaded about the Congo crisis was that it was an unsolvable conflict with a tangled mess of militias, tribal warriors, mercenaries, UN peacekeepers with dirty hands and this problem could never be solved.

When the Kinshasa administration opened dialogue with the warring parties, over 400 groups were represented but they refused to talk directly to the man who was wrongly seen as the main issue – Laurent Nkunda. Since then we have had an about turn in relations between Congo and Rwanda; the nations are cooperating.

This modern digital communication age has shown us that murder of civilians in another country can be committed by remote control, from the comfort of an apartment in Germany or anywhere in the world. Recent reports by the BBC confirm that Murwanashyaka ordered the killing of civilians in order to put pressure on the Kinshasa government so that they could negotiate with his group.

Murwanashyaka had been arrested before in 2006 and released, with charges being dropped. That was a major humiliation to the thousands of victims of the FDLR who have suffered rape, torture murder, displacement and disease.

The question now is how groups like the FDLR, or even Al-Qaeda can be stopped from using the internet and communication to coordinate attacks on civilians.

The truth is that the internet is a jungle and you cannot police it but, in cases where organisations and individuals are known to commit crimes against humanity, there should at least be some methods of controlling it.

Arresting people like the two heads of FDLR is a positive step, but the human rights lawyers who defend them will soon have them back on the streets.

Their website is still open; after a German newspaper complained that it shouldn’t be hosted in Germany, it was quickly moved to Italy. The internet is not the problem here, the problem is that these men have been afforded the hospitality of western nations to do this.

The FDLR is already classified as a terrorist organisation and the international community is tightening the noose around this group.

Taking seriously the classification of FDLR as a terrorist organisation is the only way that Western governments will release the resources necessary to combat the FDLR.

The consensus is that removing this two-headed monster at the top of FDLR will hasten the death of the group. Let’s cross our fingers and hope they stay in custody.

Rama Isibo is a social commentator

ramaisibo@hotmail.com

 

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