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UN Launches Inquiry Into Congo Atrocities


Civilians gather to look at the dead body of an unidentified man killed during fighting between the army and militia fighters in Beni, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, June 22, 2017.

The United Nations Human Rights Council launched an international investigation on Friday into killings and other atrocities in the Kasai region of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The 47-member Geneva forum adopted by consensus a resolution brought by African countries which also called on the Kinshasa government to cooperate with the team of international experts.

U.N. rights chief Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein has called repeatedly for the inquiry and said on Tuesday that a militia linked to government has committed a string of ethnically-motivated attacks in recent months, including cutting off toddlers' limbs and stabbing pregnant women.

Congo's government has been fighting insurgents in Kasai since last August, triggering fears of a wider conflict in the large central African country, which is a tinderbox of ethnic rivalry and competing claims over mineral resources.

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