A group of fighters wearing the uniform of the Congolese national army have taken charge of the lucrative mines in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo and are oppressing civilians, new research by Global Witness has found.
In recent investigations in the provinces of North and
For more than a decade, the country's mineral wealth has provided a cash base to fuel conflict and encouraged complicity from neighboring countries and other key players.
Last year, the UN joined the Congolese national army in a concerted push against the notorious rebels of the Forces Démocratiques pour la Libération du Rwanda (FDLR) who controlled the mines.
The joint offensives, which resulted in shockingly high civilian casualties, broke the FDLR's stranglehold over many lucrative mining areas.
A predominantly Rwandan Hutu armed group, some of whose leaders allegedly participated in the Rwandan genocide in 1994, the FDLR has been committing atrocities against the civilians of the DRC for a decade.
It has waged a campaign of extreme sexual violence against women in eastern
Brigades largely made up of former CNDP fighters are also in charge of Bisie, the largest tin-ore mine in eastern