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3 March 2009 - Designation of Four FDLR Leaders - Press Communiqué of the Permanent Missions to the United Nations of France, the United Kingdom and Belgium

The Permanent Missions to the United Nations of France, the United Kingdom, Belgium and the United States submitted to the Presidency of the Committee of the Security Council, which was established by Resolution 1533 (2004) concerning the Democratic Republic of the Congo, a list of four FDLR leaders to be added to the list of individuals and entities for the targeted sanctions of travel bans and the freezing of financial assets, as prescribed by Resolution 1857 (2008).

These four political or military leaders of the FDLR are: Callixte Mbarushimana, Stanislas Nzeyimana, Pacifique Ntawunguka, and Leopold Mujyambere.

As the members of the Committee were in agreement, these four individuals were placed on the Committee’s list of designees for DRC sanctions.

This designation bears testimony to the international community’s determination to fight against those who oppose the disarmament of rebel groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It is also important to emphasize that for the first time, as far as the DRC sanctions Committee is concerned, three of these leaders are sanctioned for the recruitment of children and for sexual violence committed by groups that they commanded.

The Permanent Missions to the United Nations of France, the United Kingdom, Belgium and the United States will continue to work with members of the Sanctions Committee regarding the Democratic Republic of the Congo and in accordance with criteria enumerated by Resolution 1857 (2008), so as to identify the individuals who impede the peace process in the DRC and commit serious human rights violations and violations against international humanitarian law.

Background

The UN Sanctions Committee established pursuant to resolution 1533 is responsible for monitoring compliance with sanctions in place in the DRC. It comprises all 15 members of the Security Council, and was authorised by Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1857 to list individuals to be subject to an assets freeze and travel ban. It decided on 3 March 2009 to list the four members of the FDLR named below, who have impeded the peace processes set out under the 2007 Nairobi Communiqué. They are now subject to a UN travel ban and asset freeze. Their designation follows a request to the Committee from the British Government, together with the Governments of the United States, France and Belgium.

Those now under UN sanctions are:

- 1. Callixte Mbarushimana: Executive Secretary of the FDLR. Political/Military leader of a foreign armed group operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, impeding the disarmament and the voluntary repatriation and resettlement of combatants, per UNSCR 1857 (2008) OP 4 (b).

- 2. Stanislas Nzeyimana: Deputy Commander of the FOCA (an FDLR armed branch). Military leader of a foreign armed group operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, impeding the disarmament and the voluntary repatriation and resettlement of combatants, per UNSCR 1857 (2008) OP 4 (b). In evidence collated by the DRC Sanctions Committee Group of Experts, detailed in its report of 13 February 2008, girls recovered from FDLR-FOCA had previously been abducted and sexually abused. Since mid-2007, FDLR-FOCA, which previously recruited boys in their mid to late teens, has been forcefully recruiting youths from the age of 10 years. The youngest are then used as escorts, and older children are deployed as soldiers on the frontline, per UNSCR 1857 (2008) OP4 (d) and (e).

- 3. Pacifique Ntawunguka: Commander of the First Division of FOCA (an FDLR armed branch). Military leader of a foreign armed group operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, impeding the disarmament and the voluntary repatriation and resettlement of combatants, per UNSCR 1857 (2008) OP 4 (b). In evidence collated by the DRC Sanctions Committee Group of Experts, detailed in its report of 13 February 2008, girls recovered from FDLR-FOCA had previously been abducted and sexually abused. Since mid-2007, FDLR-FOCA, which previously recruited boys in their mid to late teens, has been forcefully recruiting youths from the age of 10 years. The youngest are then used as escorts, and older children are deployed as soldiers on the frontline, per UNSCR 1857 (2008) OP4 (d) and (e).

- 4. Leopold Mujyambere: Commander of the Second Division of FOCA / the Reserve Brigades (an FDLR armed branch). Military leader of a foreign armed group operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, impeding the disarmament and the voluntary repatriation and resettlement of combatants, per UNSCR 1857 (2008) OP 4 (b). In evidence collated by the Sanctions Committee Group of Experts, detailed in its report of 13 February 2008, girls recovered from FDLR-FOCA had previously been abducted and sexually abused. Since mid-2007, FDLR-FOCA, which previously recruited boys in their mid to late teens, has been forcefully recruiting youth from the age of 10 years. The youngest are then used as escorts, and older children are deployed as soldiers on the frontline, per UNSCR 1857 (2008) OP4 (d) and (e).



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