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DATE=7/7/99 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT NUMBER=2-251537 TITLE=CONGO REBEL SWEEP (L-ONLY) BYLINE=TODD PITMAN DATELINE=KIGALI CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: REBELS IN THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO HAVE REPORTEDLY KILLED 60 MILITIAMEN AND SOLDIERS LOYAL TO CONGO-KINSHASA PRESIDENT LAURENT KABILA. AS TODD PITMAN REPORTS FROM KIGALI, OFFICIALS SAY THE KILLINGS OCCURRED DURING A MILITARY SWEEP BY REBELS IN THE EAST OF THE COUNTRY. TEXT: A RWANDAN COMMANDER, SPEAKING BY TELEPHONE FROM THE EASTERN REBEL-HELD TOWN OF UVIRA, SAYS MOST OF THE DEAD WERE BURUNDIAN GUERRILLA FIGHTERS WHO SUPPORT PRESIDENT KABILA AND HAVE BASES INSIDE THE CONGO. HE SAYS SOME CONGOLESE GOVERNMENT TROOPS WHO HAD INFILTRATED THE AREA WERE ALSO KILLED IN THE TWO-DAY MILITARY SWEEP, WHICH BEGAN ON MONDAY ON A LAKESIDE PLAIN STRETCHING DOZENS OF KILOMETERS SOUTH FROM UVIRA. MOISE NYRAUGABO, VICE-PRESIDENT OF THE MAIN REBEL GROUP KNOWN AS THE "CONGOLESE RALLY FOR DEMOCRACY," OR R-C-D, SAYS BURUNDIAN GUERRILLAS, TOGETHER WITH A LOCAL MILITIA KNOWN AS THE MAI MAI, ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR DOZENS OF CIVILIAN DEATHS IN THE AREA. MR. NYRAUGABO SAYS REBEL TROOPS ARE SEARCHING FOR ROGUE MILITIAS IN AN EFFORT TO PROTECT THE POPULATION, BUT MANY CIVILIANS IN THE EAST ARE AFRAID OF THE R-C-D, WHICH HAS LITTLE POPULARITY IN THE VAST AREAS IT CONTROLS IN THE EAST. TENSIONS IN THE AREA AND FIGHTING BETWEEN CONGOLESE REBELS AND THE MAI MAI HAVE FORCED TENS OF THOUSANDS OF CIVILIANS TO FLEE THEIR HOMES OVER THE LAST SEVERAL WEEKS. THE UNITED NATIONS REFUGEE AGENCY SAID LATE LAST MONTH THAT AN AVERAGE OF TWO-THOUSAND PEOPLE A DAY WERE FLEEING BY BOAT ACROSS LAKE TANGANYIKA TO TANZANIA, WHERE ABOUT 110-THOUSAND CONGOLESE REFUGEES ARE ALREADY HOUSED IN MAKESHIFT CAMPS. THE KILLINGS COME AS EFFORTS TO END THE BROADER WAR IN THE CONGO CONTINUE IN THE ZAMBIAN CAPITAL LUSAKA. THE BATTLE HAS ALREADY DRAWN IN ARMIES FROM SIX OTHER NATIONS. AFRICAN DEFENSE AND FOREIGN MINISTERS FROM SOME OF THOSE GOVERNMENTS, TOGETHER WITH THE REBELS AND THEIR RESPECTIVE ALLIES, ARE SOON EXPECTED TO ADOPT A DRAFT CEASE-FIRE ACCORD WHICH THEY HOPE WILL BE RATIFIED BY HEADS OF STATE AT A LATER DATE. (SIGNED) NEB/TP/PCF/KL 07-Jul-99 1:21 PM EDT (1721 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .





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