Amnesty warns of crimes against civilians after three years of Cabo Delgado insurgency
The human rights organization International Amnesty (AI) today again called for an independent investigation into crimes against civilians in Cabo Delgado, northern Mozambique, in a statement referring to the three years since the beginning of the insurgency in the region.
“Violations against the population must end immediately” and “Mozambican authorities must ensure that no suspect in the crime, including security forces, goes unpunished,” says Deprose Muchena, AI director for East and Southern Africa.
The authorities must launch “an independent and impartial investigation into these serious abuses and, if there is sufficient evidence, they must bring the suspects to trial,” he added.
According to the organization, “three years after the fighting began” in the province of Cabo Delgado, the victims of the conflict “are no longer close to justice, truth and reparation”.
“The authorities have failed to hold suspects responsible for crimes against international law and human rights violations,” he stressed.
AI is among the international organizations that in September condemned acts portrayed in videos distributed on social networks with practices of torture and other human rights violations, holding members of the Mozambican armed forces accountable.
The Mozambican Government has reiterated that they are assemblies and has defended its military and police.
“There is evidence that security forces have also committed crimes against international law and violations of human rights, including enforced disappearances, torture and extrajudicial executions,” Deprose Muchena reaffirms today.
The AI director considers that these crimes are “aggravated by the fact that the Mozambican authorities do not allow local and international journalists and investigators to document the situation, without repercussions”.
The northernmost coastal province of Mozambique, which borders Tanzania, faces a humanitarian crisis with more than 1,000 dead and 250,000 internally displaced after three years of armed conflict between Mozambican and rebel forces, whose attacks have already been claimed by the group ‘ jihadist ‘Islamic State, but whose origin remains unclear.
According to the AI, the death toll already exceeds 2,000.
In the next few years, the region is expected to receive investments of around US $ 50 billion (€ 42.6 billion) in natural gas, led by the North American oil companies Exxon Mobil and French Total (which already has works on the ground), with support from banks and agencies supporting foreign trade in several countries, including the USA.