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OFAC Sanctions Militia Leaders Stoking Conflict in DRC

The Office of Foreign Assets Control this week sanctioned six Rwandan or Congolese nationals contributing to the “escalation of conflict” in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. OFAC said each belongs to one of four armed groups causing instability in the DRC's eastern portion and committing “serious” human rights abuses.

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The agency said Apollinaire Hakizimana, Sebastien Uwimbabazi and Ruvugayimikore Protogene hold leadership positions for the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda, an armed group fighting against rival militia M23. OFAC also sanctioned Bernard Byamungu, an M23 leader.

The agency also designated Salomon Tokolonga, a colonel for the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, who has provided ammunition to FDLR fighters fighting M23. Also sanctioned was Andrew Nyamvumba, a brigadier general for the Rwandan Defense Forces, which has supported M23.