Martin Kobler, head of MONUSCO strongly condemns attacks on schools and hospitals

United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the DR Congo (MONUSCO), September 24, 2013

Kinshasa, 25 September 2013: The United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) strongly condemns the attacks on schools and hospitals committed by parties to the conflict, in particular by the armed group ADF in Beni territory.

The Head of MONUSCO Martin Kobler said ”ADF and all other parties involved in such acts must immediately stop committing these deplorable violations of the rights of the child, which have deprived more than 7,000 children of their education and affected the provision of health services for thousands more”.

Following a joint investigation mission by MONUSCO and local authorities to Kamango area, Beni territory, it was revealed that ADF elements ransacked eleven primary schools and five health centres in July 2013, destroying school furniture and looting medicine and medical equipment. From November 2012 to May 2013 ADF elements attacked four more health centres and a school, also in Beni territory.

Note to the Editors:

Perpetrators of attacks against schools and hospitals include: FDLR, Raia Mutomboki, M23, NDC Cheka, and Nyatura and the incidents range from occupation of schools, looting materials and medicine to abduction of teachers and medical personnel.

According to Security Council Resolution 1998, attacks on schools and hospitals are a grave violation of child rights in the context of the conflict, and will lead to listing by the United Nations Secretary General the annex of his annual report on Children and Armed Conflict and sanctions for perpetrators.

This year, the UN documented so far 49 incidents of attacks on schools and health facilities by armed groups in the DR Congo.