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UA 48/93 - Zaire: extrajudicial executions: at least 15 civilians in Kinshasa

, N° d'index: AFR 62/001/1993

At least 15 civilians, including a Red Cross worker, an 11-year-old child and a pregnant woman, were reportedly killed by troops in Kinshasa on 22 February 1993. The killings are said to have taken place during incidents following the killing of a civilian on 20 February 1993. The troops responsible are believed to be members of President Mobutu's Division Speciale Presidentielle. AI is concerned that DSP troops are carrying out extrajudicial executions with impunity following the recent riots.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AFR 62/01/93
Distr: UA/SC
UA 48/93 Extrajudicial executions 25 February 1993
ZAIRE: At least 15 civilians in Kinshasa
Amnesty International is concerned at reports that at least 15 civilians,
including a Red Cross worker, an 11-year-old child and a pregnant woman, were
extrajudicially killed by Zairian troops in the capital, Kinshasa, in a series
on incidents on 22 February 1993. The troops responsible are believed to be
members of President Mobutu's elite Division Spéciale Présidentielle (DSP),
Special Presidential Division.
The killings are said to have taken place in incidents that followed the killing
of a civilian called Ekofo on 20 February 1993, reportedly following a dispute.
The soldiers responsible are thought to have been paratroopers from a division
of the armed forces from the Centre d'Entraînement des Troupes Aéroportée
(CETA), a central airforce training camp. The following day a reprisal attack
by other civilians resulted in the death of a DSP soldier who apparently had
nothing to do with the previous killing. On 23 February, members of the DSP,
enraged by the killing of the soldier, went on a punitive raid. They shot
into a crowd of civilians in Kingasini, an outlying district of Kinshasa, before
realising that Ekofo was being buried in Gombe, another district of Kinshasa.
They then set out for Gombe, killing 13 people and injuring a dozen others
on the way, and finally killed two more who were burying Ekofo at Gombe cemetery.
These incidents intensify Amnesty International's concern that members of the
elite DSP are carrying out extrajudicial executions with impunity following
the recent breakdown in the political situation.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
These killings follow recent disturbances in January 1993 in Kinshasa when
over 300 people were killed during riots, including civilians and foreign
nationals. The violence started when soldiers, angry at being paid in
controversial new banknotes which had been boycotted by opposition supporters,
went on the rampage. The five-million-zaire notes, which had been declared
illegal tender by the Prime Minister, Etienne Tshisekedi, long time opponent
of President Mobutu, were refused by market traders and businesses. The riots
were eventually violently suppressed by the DSP. The unrest was the worst
since September 1991 when troops rioted because they had not been paid; as
a result 20,000 foreigners were evacuated from the country.
Members of the DSP are reported to have been responsible for the extrajudicial
execution of 37 protesters during a demonstration in Kinshasa in February 1992.
No investigation is known to have been carried out into these killings and
so no-one has been found to be responsible nor brought to justice.
President Mobutu is locked in a bitter power struggle with Prime Minister
Tshisekedi who was elected by a pro-democracy conference in August 1992.
President Mobutu previously named Tshisekedi as premier in late 1991 but
dismissed him within a week because he refused to swear an oath of allegiance
to the President.
Page 2 of UA 48/93
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/express and airmail letters
either in French, English or in your own language:
- expressing concern at reports that on 23 February 1993 members of the Division
Spéciale Présidentielle (DSP) reportedly extrajudicially executed at least
15 unarmed civilians in Kinshasa;
- expressing concern that members of the DSP are also reported to have been
responsible for the extrajudicial execution of 37 protesters during a
demonstration in Kinshasa in February 1992;
- expressing concern that the relevant authorities have apparently failed to
take any action in response to the reported extrajudicial execution of unarmed
civilians, including women and children, despite the fact the reports of these
killings have been widely publicised;
- calling on the government to urgently initiate an independent and impartial
inquiry into all extrajudicial executions and other human rights violations
which are reported to have occurred in Kinshasa and to ensure that those found
to be responsible are brought to justice;
- urging the relevant authorities to curb the activities of the DSP and make
them accountable for their actions;
- requesting the authorities to establish strict guidelines for the use of
lethal force in accordance with international standards and to issue public
instructions to all members of the security forces that human rights violations,
including the killing of unarmed civilians, are criminal offences and that
those responsible should be brought to justice.
APPEALS TO
1) President:
Son Excellence Monsieur Maréchal
MOBUTU Sese Seko
Président de la République
Kinshasa-Ngaliema
République du Zaïre
Telegrams: Président Maréchal
Mobutu, Kinshasa, Zaire
Telexes: 21368
Saluation: Monsieur le Président /
Dear President
2) Chief of Staff of the Armed forces:
Monsieur le Général ELUKI Monga
Chef d'Etat-Major Général des Forces
armées zaïroises (FAZ)
Ministère de la Défense nationale
Kinshasa-Ngaliema
République du Zaïre
Telegrams: Chef d'Etat-Major Eluki,
Kinshasa, Zaire
Salutation: Monsieur le Chef
d'Etat-Major /
Dear General
COPIES OF YOUR APPEALS TO:
1) Prime Minister and Head of
Government:
Monsieur TSHISEKEDI Etienne
Premier Ministre
Hôtel du Conseil exécutif
Kinshasa-Gombe
République du Zaire
2) Human Rights Organization:
Ligue Zairoise des droits de l'homme
20 rue Draily
6000 Charleroi
Belgium
and the following newspapers:
Le Potentiel
2 Avenue Msi-Manimba
BP 11338
Kinshasa
Zaire
Elima
BP 10017
Kinshasa-Limete
Zaire
and to diplomatic representatives of Zaire accredited to your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 8 April 1993.

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