U.S. Ambassador and Alternate Representative for Special Political Affairs to the United Nations Ambassador Jeffrey DeLaurentis today stressed that the United States is committed to join the governments of Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Republic of South Sudan, and Uganda, as well as the African Union and United Nations, to end the threat posed by the Lord’s Resistance Army.
At a UN Security Council Meeting on UNOCA and the Lord’s Resistance Army, Mr. DeLaurentis said the Lord’s Resistance Army is one of the most brutal terrorist organizations on the planet.
“Its leaders, including Joseph Kony”,” Okot Odhiambo, Dominic Ongwen – all under indictment by the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity”-“continue to hold hundreds of abductees hostage, forcing them to kill, loot, and rape. There is no ambiguity here. The LRA’s continued activity is an affront to human dignity and a stain on our collective conscience.” -Mr. DeLaurentis
He cited that the U.S. Congress and President Obama have responded. He said President Obama announced last month the United Nations would deploy a small number of military personnel to the LRA-affected region, in consultation with host governments, to act as advisors to regional militaries pursuing the LRA.
He noted that the deployment is in line with the LRA Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act, which was passed last year by our Congress with widespread bipartisan support. He said sending American personnel in a non-combat capacity crystallizes U.S. commitment to supporting regional partners in ending the threat.
“Our advisors will work to enhance the capacity of regional militaries to coordinate and fuse intelligence with effective operational planning. U.S. forces will not engage in direct action against the LRA, but they will be equipped for self-defense.” -Mr. DeLaurentis
He stressed that the United States notes the importance of the continued leadership and cooperation of the regional governments in this effort. He said regional militaries have worked together to pursue the LRA across a vast area of dense jungle. He added they have had some success in reducing the LRA’s numbers and keeping them from regrouping.
He stressed that the United States is committed to working with the governments of Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Republic of South Sudan, and Uganda, as well as the African Union and United Nations, to end the threat posed by the Lord’s Resistance Army.
“With our enhanced support, we hope they will be able to make a final push to bring an end to this longstanding problem.” -Mr. DeLaurentis