DR Congo + 1 more

DRC-Uganda: Ugandan MP asks government to explain UPDF's role in Ituri

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NAIROBI, 7 March (IRIN) - A Ugandan Member of Parliament has asked the government to clarify allegations that the Uganda People's Defence Forces (UPDF) participated in massacres in the Democratic Republic of the Congo's Ituri District, according to The New Vision government-owned newspaper.
"I would like to know if Uganda's presence in the Congo is for massacring the Congolese," the newspaper quoted the MP, Ben Wacha, as asking during a debate in parliament on Wednesday.

It quoted Wacha, who is also the chairman of the parliamentary committee on rules and privileges, as telling parliament that he had heard a BBC report on Wednesday in which a Congolese rebel leader was quoted as saying that the UPDF was behind the fighting that claimed "hundreds" of lives in Ituri.

Wacha said the BBC had quoted the rebel leader as saying there had been intense fighting in Ituri, and that between 300 and 400 people had been killed by Wednesday morning. "He [rebel leader] said the fighting was so intense that there was no time for burying the dead, and accused Uganda and one other country of being behind the massacres," the newspaper quoted Wacha as saying.

The New Vision reported that the ministers of defence and foreign affairs were not in the House, so Wacha's question had not been answered.

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