RUSIZI — Three former rebels of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) have been admitted at Gihundwe Hospital in Rusizi district, after being assaulted in the DR Congo’s town of Bukavu.
Bruno Bucensenga, 28, Deo Turayisenge, 26, and Jean Bosco Tuyisenge (27), all at the rank of corporal, were allegedly beaten up by a group of Congolese soldiers and other residents in Nyawera areas in Bukavu town recently.
They all hail from the former Gisenyi commune now in Rubavu district of the Western Province.
It all happened after Congolese soldiers intercepted a MONUC vehicle in which they were traveling on October 29- from a MONUC barracks in Warungu area.
They had spent a night there after defecting from rebel activities and MONUC was repatriating them to Rwanda.
Speaking from their hospital beds, the trio narrated that they were intercepted at Nyawera at around 5 pm, by Congolese soldiers who ordered them out of the vehicle after learning that they were former FDLR rebels.
They were accused of being Gen. Laurent Nkunda’s fighters.
“We were travelling in a MONUC vehicle from Warungu where we had spent a night ….those who beat us up were Congolese soldiers and local residents. They ordered us to get out of the vehicle calling us rebels attached to CNDP,” Corporal Bucensenga said last Friday.
He added that the soldiers threatened that they would always beat to death Rwandans visiting DR Congo, saying the Rwandan government is responsible for the prevailing insecurity in their country.
Bucensenga said the assault left them unconscious and they were first taken by some good Samaritans, to a Chinese hospital in Nyawera.
The three arrived at Gihundwe Hospital last Thursday morning aboard a UNHCR vehicle. They entered Rwanda through Rusizi 1 border.
They complained of general body pain including head ache, stomach ache and chests pain.
According to their account, the Congolese also threatened to burn them using car tires.
The group says they joined FDLR in 1998 and they have been staying in Mwenga zone in DR Congo’s north Kivu province.
Bucensenga explained that they defected after realising that their leaders were just deceiving them to continue fighting without genuine grounds.
“For us we decided to come back to our country after noticing that the FDLR leaders were just deceiving us. According to our knowledge and observations we believe those FDLR leaders just need to be protected but they are fighting on for nothing and lack of a clear vision,” he said.