The report further stated that thirty-three of those executed by M23 were young men and boys who tried to escape the rebels’ ranks.
In a statement, which Chimpreports has seen, the M23 rebels say the weak, incompetent and disoriented government of the Democratic Republic of Congo is a good prey for the international organization like Human Right Watch, to keep their clout as a savior and protector of the vulnerable.
“We do know that, where there is a serious and up to the task government with a noble mission to the people, the likes of Human Right Watch organization staffs and investigators will be confined in the darkest frustration of welfare system in most major cities of the western world, like Paris, London, Brussels; therefore for them to have life and relevancy they have to contribute in keeping and maintain a mediocre system in power,” said Martin Tetunga, the mutineers’ Spokesperson.
Human Right Watch also said Rwandan officials may be complicit in war crimes through their continued military assistance to M23 forced and the Rwandan army has deployed its troops to eastern Congo to directly support the M23 rebels in military operations.
The organization said it based its findings on interviews with 190 Congolese and Rwandan victims, family members, witnesses, local authorities, and current or former M23 fighters between May and September.
But Tetunga says it has become evident that Human Rights Watch has developed a conflict of interest in the reporting in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, because they can choose and pick how they will report human right abuses and make sure they protect the greatest abuser of all, the government of Kinshasa.
The rebels added that the face, voice of the Congolese people, and the people of Great kivu has always been “Chebeya Bahizire Floribert and since his assassination, human Right Watch has stood by while the Kabila System is mocking his life with a sort of a trial in a military tribunal, where the main culprits will manipulate their charade and abuse the right for justice for the millions of people who look up to Chebeya.”
Tetunga warns: “Our rejection of this human right watch report raise from the simple question, what has an organization like human right watch done to make sure the trial of Chebeya is conducted in a fair transparent civil court?”
M23 is a group of soldiers that abandoned the DRC army in April, citing segregation and Kinshasha’s failure to honour its obligations during the 2009 integration accord.
Rwanda has since been accused of fomenting trouble in Kivu by supporting M23 with recruits and heavy ammunition, allegations Kigali vehemently denies.
The situation exploded in June when M23 attacked and broke the defence lines of the Congolese army in Rutshuru and Bunagana and other neighbouring towns.
The international community responded by cutting aid to Rwanda over the alleged support of rebels.
According to Anneke Van Woudenberg the Senior Africa Researcher at Human Rights Watch, The M23 rebels are committing a horrific trail of new atrocities in eastern Congo and should be held accountable for these crimes and the Rwandan officials supporting these abusive commanders could face justice for aiding and abetting the crimes.
However, fighting has been halted in Kivu due to President Yoweri Museveni’s meetings with the rebel representatives and continued efforts by regional Presidents to seek a peaceful solution to the crisis.
Presidents from the Great Lakes region gathered in Kampala last weekend where they resolved to put in place a neutral international force under the mandate of the African Union and United Nations to crush all rebels in the Eastern part of Congo within 90 days.