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UA 293/93 - Zaire: fear of torture: 20 people, including: Tabura Kabuga, Musabimana, Nzabomimana, Ndambara, Kabunga, Ndayambaje, Kasuka, Muhozi, Kacuku wa Ngeyo

, N° d'index: AFR 62/013/1993

On or around 13 August 1993 the above named people, and possibly as many as ten others, were arrested by members of the security forces in Goma, North- Kivu region. Soon after their arrest they were reportedly transferred to Kinshasa, and their exact place of detention is unknown. There are fears they may be subjected to ill-treatment and even "disappearance" in custody. Conditions in most Zairean prisons are very harsh. Those arrested are people of ethnic Rwandan origin, Hutu and Tutsi, locally collectively known as Banyarwanda. Their arrests took place in the wake of mass killings of Banyarwanda by members of Hunde and Nyanga ethnic groups in North-Kivu region.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AFR 62/13/93
Distr: UA/SC
UA 293/93 Fear of torture 26 August 1993
ZAIRE: 20 people including:
Tabura Kabuga
Musabimana
Nzabomimana
Ndambara
Kabunga
Ndayambaje
Kasuka
Muhozi
Kacuku wa Ngeyo
Amnesty International is concerned for the safety of the above named people, and
possibly of as many as 10 others, who were arrested by members of the security forces
on or around 13 August 1993 in Goma, the capital of Eastern Zaire's North-Kivu region.
They were reportedly transferred soon after their arrest to Kinshasa. The
authorities have not revealed their exact place of detention. There are fears that
the detainees may be subjected to severe ill-treatment or may even "disappear" in
custody. Conditions in most Zairian prisons are very harsh and detainees are often
deprived of food and water, subjected to torture or other forms of cruel, inhuman
and degrading treatment while being held in cramped and unsanitary cells.
Those arrested are people of ethnic Rwandese origin, Hutu and Tutsi, locally
collectively known as Banyarwanda. The reasons for the arrests are unclear: some
of those arrested have reportedly been accused by local Zairean authorities of
gun-running though there are also reports that the men were arrested for protesting
against recent killings of Banyarwanda in North-Kivu region. According to press
reports, heavy weapons were seized on 9 August 1993 in vehicles belonging to
Banyarwanda. The weapons were allegedly destined for neighbouring Rwanda where civil
war had been continuing since October 1990, until a peace agreement between the warring
parties was signed on 4 August 1993. Regional officials have reportedly called
for the expulsion of Banyarwanda and accused the regional governor of being slow
in taking action against the Banyarwanda. The governor has said he is waiting for
the result of a commission of inquiry into the incident before taking further action.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
The arrests took place in the wake of mass killings of Banyarwanda by members of
Hunde and Nyanga ethnic groups in North-Kivu region. The killings began in Walikale
and Masisi districts in March 1993. In June 1993 independent sources estimated that
more than 3,000 people, mostly Banyarwanda, had been killed in intercommunal violence
in North-Kivu region. To date, as many as 7,000 people may have been killed. About
200,000 people have been displaced, most of them fleeing into the bush, health centres
or churches.
Government and security officials are known to have instigated or condoned the
killings. Sources from North-Kivu claimed that some members of the security forces
in civilian clothes were involved in the violence against the Banyarwanda. Some of
the soldiers sent to the area to quell the violence were reportedly involved in raping
women and looting. In mid-July 1993 President Mobutu sent about 140 members of the
Division spéciale présidentielle (DSP) to the region, ostensibly to quell the
violence, but the impact of their arrival is not known.
There are reported to be about two million Banyarwanda in the region; many entered
Zaire as refugees during ethnic disturbances in Rwanda which began in 1959. Others
were brought to Zaire between the 1930s and 1950s by Belgian colonialists as migrant
labourers. In neighbouring Rwanda a civil war between a Tutsi-dominated rebel group
and the Hutu-led government began in October 1990. Before a peace agreement was signed
by the government and the rebels on 4 August 1993 the war had caused thousands, mostly
Tutsi, to flee into exile and hundreds
Page 2 of UA 293/93
of thousands of Hutu to be displaced. In recent years Banyarwanda have protested
at being treated as foreigners in Zaire or at having limited or no civil and political
rights.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/express and airmail letters
either in French, English or in your own language:
- expressing concern at the arrest of about 20 people (give some names) on or around
13 August 1993 in Goma; asking that the reasons for the arrests be made public, for
a list of the detainees and that their place of detention to be made public;
- expressing fears for their safety and seeking assurances that none of the detainees
are being subjected to torture or other forms of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment;
- asking that unless they are to be promptly charged with a recognizably criminal
offence and brought to trial in conformity with international standards of fairness,
they be released immediately and unconditionally;
- urging that they be given immediate access to legal counsel, relatives and any
necessary medical attention.
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, Zaïre
Telexes: 21368
Salutation: Monsieur le Président /
Dear President
2) Chief of Staff of the Armed forces:
Monsieur le Grand amiral 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 Grand Admiral
3) Governor of North-Kivu Region:
Monsieur Moto Mupenda
Région du Nord-Kivu
Hôtel de ville
Goma
Région du Nord-Kivu
République du Zaïre
Telegrams: Gouverneur du Nord-Kivu,
Goma, Zaire
Salutation: Monsieur le Gouverneur /
Dear Governor
4) Commander of the Presidential Guard:
Monsieur le Général de Brigade NZIMBI
Ngbale
Commandant de la Division spéciale
présidentielle (DSP)
Présidence de la République
Kinshasa-Ngaliema
République du Zaïre
Telegrams: Commandant Nzimbi de la DSP,
Kinshasa, Zaire
Salutation: Monsieur le Commandant /
Dear Commander
COPIES OF YOUR APPEALS TO:
1) Human Rights organization:
Ligue zaïroise des droits de l'homme
20 rue Draily
6000 Charleroi, Belgium
2) Head of the national security service:
Monsieur TUTU Ambago
Administrateur général du Service
national d'intelligence et de
protection
BP 3060, Kinshasa-Gombe
République du Zaïre
and the following newspapers:
3) Le Potential
2 Avenue Msi-Manimba
BP 11338
Kinshasa 1
Zaire
4) 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 7 October 1993.

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