Bosco Ntaganda garnered widespread media attention earlier this month after he and his supporters defected from the Congolese army. The defection, which further undermined security in the violence-prone eastern region of Congo, occurred less than a month after the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, or ICC, called for Ntaganda’s immediate arrest and as Congolese civil society groups highlighted the links between the wanted war criminal and recently convicted former rebel leader Thomas Lubanga.
In a newly published fact sheet, “Who is Bosco Ntaganda: Lynchpin to Security or International War Criminal?” the Enough Project chronicles Ntaganda’s extensive list of human rights violations in the eastern Congo. In addition, Enough partner organization Human Rights Watch released today a comprehensive history and timeline of Bosco Ntaganda’s human rights abuses—a must-read for anyone following the ongoing crisis in eastern Congo—and the following video documenting witness accounts of Ntaganda’s alleged crimes.
Ntaganda, the former head of the Rwandan-backed CNDP rebel group, and his loyal supporters were incorporated into the Congolese army in 2009 as a result of a peace deal with the government. As part of the deal, Ntaganda was given the rank of general. The title and position within the Congolese military hierarchy gave him de facto impunity as he engaged in illicit mineral deals in eastern Congo. It also provided him with protection from arrest in spite of a 2006 ICC indictment against him for human rights violations allegedly committed when he was deputy chief of general staff for military operations with the Congolese rebel group Forces Patriotiques pour la libération du Congo, or FPLC.
Earlier this week Congolese President Joseph Kabila publicly declared his commitment to apprehending Ntaganda so that he can be held accountable for human rights violations. Enough supports the call for Ntaganda’s arrest.
The Enough factsheet provides information about Ntaganda’s background areas operation and describes the human rights abuses that he oversaw, both before and after his 2006 ICC indictment. The factsheet highlights that Ntaganda’s human rights abuses did not abate after he and his troops were integrated into the Congolese military structure.
Read the full Enough fact sheet, “Who is Bosco Ntaganda: Lynchpin to Security or International War Criminal?”
Photo: Bosco Ntaganda (ICC)