October 31, 1996 |
Tito Nankimbesha trudged slowly across the grassy field, his bony arms cradling a small bundle wrapped in red cotton cloth. Ahead, two men with hoes chopped short, shallow rectangles in the hard earth. Another twisted sticks into four tiny crosses. A searing wind blew down from the hazy heights of Zaire's eastern escarpment. "He died of thirst," the 50-year-old peasant said as he put down the body of his son, Habimaiya, 2.
November 1, 1996 |
Tens of thousands of frightened refugees were on the move again Thursday in eastern Zaire after heavy fighting exploded around the airport in Goma, a key logistic and strategic city that appears to be the major target of the widening Central African war. Roads and bridges north and south of the besieged city, the administrative and supply base for more than 1.
October 22, 1996 |
Fighting between Zairian troops and ethnic Tutsis has reportedly prompted more than 220,000 Hutu refugees to flee camps in eastern Zaire. U.N. refugee agency spokesman Paul Stromberg said Zairian troops hired by the United Nations to protect the refugees reported that all 12 camps near the town of Uvira were empty and that nearby villages were abandoned after a third day of heavy fighting in the area. Most of the refugees had originally fled ethnic violence in Burundi.
March 5, 1997 |
Residents' nerves are frayed in Zaire's strategic Congo River port of Kisangani as rebels advance on what would be the biggest prize so far in their whirlwind campaign. Tension is palpable in the crumbling streets of Kisangani, whose older residents have horrific memories of rebellions and subsequent army suppression during the 1960s. The better off have already fled by boat or plane.
December 19, 1996 |
Hundreds of residents of the rebel-held eastern Zairian city of Goma fled Wednesday, saying they feared a counterattack by Zairian troops following the return of President Mobutu Sese Seko to his country. Residents said they had little confidence in the ability of Zairian rebels to defend the city, which fell in early November. "Twenty members of my family left for Bukavu since [Tuesday].
November 29, 1996 |
A Canadian general met with Zaire's rebel leader Thursday to discuss how to deliver food to Rwandan refugees stuck in rebel-held parts of eastern Zaire. Canadian Lt. Gen. Maurice Baril, head of the proposed multinational intervention force, and rebel leader Laurent Kabila met for an hour at Lake Kivu. Meanwhile, thousands of new refugees streamed into Sake, west of Goma, where they were picked up by U.N. aid agency trucks and driven to the Rwandan border.
October 14, 1996 |
About 20,000 Hutu refugees from Burundi fled their camp in eastern Zaire on Sunday after it was attacked by armed men who killed four of them, aid officials said. The assailants were believed to be Banyamulenge, a Tutsi clan recently ordered out of Zaire by provincial authorities after up to 200 years of living abroad, some of the sources said. "Four refugees were killed and six wounded in the attack on Runingo camp," a U.N. source said.
November 17, 1996 |
As an astonishing column of Rwandan refugees silently trudged home to an uncertain future in the land they fled in chaos and panic more than two years ago, the Clinton administration signaled Saturday that it was rethinking the size and scope of the role that U.S. troops would play in a proposed international mercy mission in the region. Defense Secretary William J.
November 16, 1996 |
Hundreds of thousands of Hutu refugees, unexpectedly liberated from the radical militia that had held them virtual captives in eastern Zaire, began returning to their native Rwanda on Friday as the U.N. Security Council authorized an international military rescue mission in the region. U.N. officials and representatives of private humanitarian agencies described a mass, orderly migration of refugees along muddy roads eastward from the Zairian town of Goma toward the Rwandan border.
June 4, 1997 |
The U.N. refugee agency urged Congo President Laurent Kabila and other African leaders Tuesday to take steps to protect Rwandan refugees in the wake of the killing last week of an aid worker and four refugees in the eastern Congo. Spokeswoman Pam O'Toole said the Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees is suspending its aid work at Karuba, near Goma, where Kabila's soldiers reportedly carried out the May 29 shooting.