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UA 406/94 - Angola: extrajudicial executions by government officers and deliberate and arbitrary killings by UNITA: Eduardo Domingos and others

, N° d'index: AFR 12/004/1994

AI is concerned that both government and UNITA forces are deliberately killing suspected opponents while preparing to sign a new peace agreement for Angola. Government forces allegedly gunned down Eduardo Domingos, a professor of economics and UNITA supporter who had been imprisoned and released in 1993, in Lubango in October 1994. UNITA troops are said to ahve executed prisoners before fleeing from the stronghold, Huambo, captured by government forces in November 1994. Government forces, according to UNITA, have extrajudicially executed suspected UNITA sympathizers in Huambo and Uige.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AFR 12/04/94
Distr: UA/SC
UA 406/94 Extrajudicial executions by government forces and
deliberate and arbitrary killings by UNITA
17 November 1994
ANGOLA Eduardo Domingos and others
Amnesty International is concerned that, while the government and the União
Nacional para a Independência Total de Angola (UNITA), National Union for the
Total Independence of Angola, are preparing to sign a new peace agreement for
Angola, both sides are deliberately killing suspected opponents.
Government forces reportedly gunned down Eduardo Domingos in the southern town
of Lubango in October. UNITA troops are said to have executed prisoners before
fleeing from their stronghold, Humabo, which government forces recaptured in
November 1994. Government forces, according to UNITA, have extrajudicially
executed suspected UNITA sypathizers in Huambo and in Uige.
A new peace agreement, known as the Lusaka Protocol, is due to be signed in
Lusaka on Sunday 20 November. A previous peace agreement, the Peace Accords
for Angola, signed in May 1991, broke down after elections held in September
1992. UNITA had disputed the election results and reassembled its army. Between
October 1993 and January 1994, government forces extrajudicially executed
hundreds of suspected UNITA supporters in the capital, Luanda, in Lubango and
other cities. Since then both sides have deliberately killed prisoners.
Even on the brink of peace, both sides have shown an utter disregard for human
rights. Eduardo Domingos, a 42 year-old professor of economics, was killed
on 2 October 1994, allegedly by government security officials. Eduardo Domingos
had been among many UNITA supporters arrested in January 1993. He was released
a month later but his house had been wrecked and his car burned. He then wanted
to leave Lubango but the authorities refused to allow him to leave. Amnesty
International is continuing to inquire into UNITA allegations that government
forces extrajudicially executed UNITA sympathizers as it attacked or entered
towns held by UNITA.
Between 6 and 9 November 1994 the government army took control of Huambo, which
UNITA had captured in March 1993. Journalists who visited the city on 13 November
found the bodies of prisoners who had apparently been executed several days
earlier. There were three bodies of men in the courtyard of the Provincial
Prosecutor's Office which UNITA had used as a prison and in private houses
which had been used to hold prisoners. Some of the bodies, which were dressed
in prison-issue long T-shirts and grey trousers, showed injuries which appeared
to have been caused by torture. In other areas bodies had been thrown into
shallow wells. The journalists spoke to local people who had come to identify
the bodies and told how their relatives had been arrested on suspicion of
supporting the government. In some cases they had been allowed to visit their
relatives in prison but in other cases they never saw them again. UNITA has
denied that it killed prisoners.
Angola has a long history of mass killings of political opponents by both the
government and UNITA. Even during the implementation of the May 1991 peace
accords, which was monitored by the United Nations (UN), there were further
political killings. These were never adequately investigated, with the result
that the use of violence as a political weapon increased. If the Lusaka
Protocol, due to be signed on 20 November, is to bring a lasting peace, the
cycle of killings and other human rights violations must be stopped. Amnesty
International has called for the new peace agreement to include strong measures
to protect human rights. Among other things, it has urged that human rights
monitors, working with a UN coordinator, should be deployed throughout the
Representatives of both sides initialled the Lusaka Protocol at the end of
October. The protocol is the result of a year's negotiations led by the UN
Secretary-General's Special Representative for Angola, Alioune Blondin Beye.
On 15 November the two sides signed a truce which is to come into force at
20.00 hours on 16 November and last until 24:00 hours on 22 November when a
full cease-fire is due to come into force.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes and airmail letters either
in Portuguese, English or in your own language:
- calling on both the government and UNITA to communicate to their forces
immediate instructions to stop extrajudicial executions and deliberate and
arbitrary killings;
- calling on both sides to encourage thorough and independent investigations
into all suspected extrajudicial executions or deliberate and arbitrary
killings including those of Eduardo Domingos and of the people who were killed
in Huambo and Chinguar;
- calling on both the government and UNITA to make firm, public commitments
to respecting human rights.
Sua Excenência José Eduardo dos Santos
Presidente da República
Futungo de Belas
República de Angola
Telegrams: Presidente da República, Luanda, Angola
Telexes: 3072 lugol an / 3345 gab pres an.
Salutation: Your Excellency
UNITA President
Sua Excelência Jonas Malheiro Savimbi
(please send appeals via the UNITA office in your country, if there is one)
Diplomatic representatives of Angola accredited to your country and Embassies
of countries involved in the peace process in Angola or are, like Angola, members
of the Southern African Development Community: Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi,
Mozambique, Namibia, Portugal, Russia, South Africa, Swaziland, USA, Zambia,
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 29 December 1994.

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