New report says fugitive LRA leader is hiding in Sudanese-controlled areas of a disputed enclave in South Sudan.
The UN Security Council has released a new report, saying fugitive rebel leader Joseph Kony is hiding in Sudanese-controlled areas of a disputed enclave in South Sudan bordering both Sudan and the Central African Republic.
Kony, the leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) has been the subject of a massive manhunt and is wanted by the International Criminal Court along with several of his commanders for war crimes, including rape and using child soldiers.
“Credible sources suggest LRA leader Joseph Kony and senior LRA commanders have recently returned to seek safe haven in Sudanese-controlled areas of the enclave,” the report said.
The UN also suggested senior Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) commanders were hiding in northeastern Central African Republic, exploiting the instability in the country to regroup.
Al Jazeera’s James Bays, reporting from the United Nations, said the report showed that despite being reduced in strength, the LRA remained a potent threat and a powerful force.
Kony waged a brutal campaign against the Ugandan government for nearly two decades.
The LRA’s rebellion sought to remove the government of President Yoweri Museveni and rule the country according to the Biblical ten commandments.
Most of the group’s fighters were forcibly recruited into its ranks, and others who refused had their ears, lips and limbs hacked off.
Despite sustained government offensives, it took Ugandan forces nearly two decades to rein them in.
After a series of defeats, the LRA fled to neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Since 2008, the LRA has killed more than 2,600 civilians and abducted more than 4,000 people, according to Human Rights Watch. The US State Department has placed a $5m reward for information leading to his arrest, transfer, or conviction.
A 5,000-strong African Union Regional Task Force, supported by 100 US Special Forces, has been hunting Kony and LRA commanders.
( Courtesy UN & AGENCIES ……. Source ……. Our Freelance Contributor in Nairobi)