October 31, 2007

New Hope and Hurdles for Uganda Peace

Overshadowed by the Darfur conflict, one of Africa’s most bloody and intractable rebellions inches closer to resolution.

Reconciliation is on the agenda in Uganda, where an unprecedented meeting between elected President Yoweri Musevini and leaders of the Lord’s Resistance Army is scheduled for the capital city of Kampala, reports The Monitor, a leading newspaper there.

The LRA, renowned for extraordinary cruelty in its attacks on rural villages, and children in particular, has been locked in conflict with the government for decades.

One of the decisive issues in the conflict is the fate of Joseph Kony, the leader of the LRA, who is wanted for crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court in the Netherlands.

The human-rights advocacy group Enough says that only three options exist for Kony — “accountability, asylum or arrest.”

The choices are not appealing to Kony and his lieutenants, who remain on the run, haunted by ICC arrest warrants, and the specter of homegrown vengeance.

Activists say that residents of northern Uganda, center of the LRA’s rebellion, have already killed Kony’s brothers, and his other associates must now travel with armed escorts.

Sources:

“Uganda: LRA Delegates to Meet Museveni”
The Monitor (Uganda), October 31, 2007

“Uganda: Third Country Asylum for Kony”
The Monitor (Uganda), October 30, 2007

“Uganda: A War Against Children”
Newsdesk.org, April 1, 2005

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