The Rwandan Socialist Labour Party (PSR) has added its voice among those calling on the UN Mission in Congo (Monusco) and the government of DR Congo to forcibly disarm the FDLR, a militia that carried out the Genocide against the Tutsi in 1994.
Speaking during a press conference on Friday, PSR president, Jean Baptiste Rucibigango, said that by deliberately refusing to abide by the January 2 deadline to surrender, the FDLR had chosen to continue their criminal acts.
“These militias are responsible for the dark past of our country that claimed over a million people, thereby affecting the country’s development process [owing to the loss of a big labour force] in all sectors. It is therefore time to unite and act against this group,” he said.
The International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) gave the militia up to January 2 to surrender and demobilise but the deadline was ignored.
The UN Security Council Resolutions 2147 (2014) and 2098 (2013) authorise military offensive against the FDLR.
Rucibigango said that measures should be taken to ensure FDLR combatants and their leaders face justice. PSR says that leaders and financiers of the DR Congo-based bandits should be identified and arrested from their hide-outs to face the law; including confiscating their travel documents and properties.
The party mentions Victor Byiringiro, Callixte Mbarushimana who is said to have once served as FDLR Executive Secretary, Ignace Murwanashyaka the chairman of the group, Sylvestre Mudacumura and former FDLR vice president Straton Musoni.
Over the last twenty years, the FDLR have carried out cross-border raids into Rwanda from their bases, killing innocent civilians. Human Rights groups have also accused the militia of rape among other crimes against civilians in DR Congo.