Disarmament sites handed to Ituri provincial government

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MONUSCO handed two sites to the provincial government for disarmament and demobilisation of militiamen from the Ituri Patriotic Resistance Force (FRPI).

The sites are erected in Karatsi and Kazana in the Walendu Bindi chiefdom in Irumu Territory where Congolese authorities, at national and provincial level and the UN peacekeeping mission combined to halt violence in this part of Ituri.

This handover by MONUSCO marks another step forward in this process, with the February signing of a peace agreement in Gety between the FRPI and the Congolese Government. Next step is an announcement by the Congolese government of an effective start of DDR (disarmament, demobilisation and relocation) of FPRI combatants.

The Kazana site is 40 km south of Bunia with 26 MONUSCO tents. Fifteen will house FRPI militiamen. The tents have 162 beds.

There are units reserved for identifying militiamen, for isolating suspected COVID-19 cases and a kitchen and staff dormitory. MONUSCO built toilets and showers fitted with three thousand litres two water tanks and food storage containers.

A memorandum of understanding was signed between government and MONUSCO for management of the sites. According to the head of the stabilisation and reconstruction programme for areas emerging from armed conflict (STAREC) in Ituri Jean-Marc Mazio, “all conditions are now met at these sites to receive FRPI militiamen”.

About 1 100 FRPI militiamen who spent nine months at the pre-cantonment site in Azita are waiting to be disarmed.

The Karatsi disarmament site was designed and built in accordance with technical specifications provided by UNMAS (UN Mine Action Service).