Bloody repression of demonstration in Goma: heavy sentences demanded against six soldiers

The prosecution requested sentences ranging from 10 years to life imprisonment against six Republican Guard soldiers. They have been prosecuted by the military court in Goma since 5 September, including for incitement to commit acts contrary to duty or discipline. This trial in flagrance is conducted following the repression of a demonstration of August 30 by the faithful of a mystical-religious sect against the presence of MONUSCO, and the strength of the East African community in North Kivu, accused of having failed in their mission. This repression cost the lives of at least 57 civilians, according to the Congolese justice.

People arrested before a sect protest against MONUSCO, next to fetishes on the ground, August 30, 2023. © AFP

By: RFI Follow


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With our correspondent in Bukavu, William Basimike

In its indictment, the prosecution wants the commander of the Republican Guard's inter-army brigade in North Kivu, Colonel Mike Mikombé, to be sentenced to death, a sentence commuted to life imprisonment. The prosecution also requested a 20-year sentence for Lieutenant Colonel Donatien Bawili. Ditto for three second-class soldiers.

The civil party welcomes and asks that the sentences be applied. "We will ensure that they serve their sentence after conviction," says Julien Bisimwa, a member of the collective of lawyers for the civil party.

In its pleadings, the civil party also demanded compensation for the families of the victims and the release of civilians detained in Munzenze Central Prison since the events of 30 August.

Throughout the trial, the defenders of the main accused, Colonel Mike Mikombé, demanded the presence of Lieutenant General Constant Ndima who commanded the military operations at the time. Saturday's hearing will be devoted to the defence's closing arguments.

" READ ALSO DRC: heavy toll in Goma after the repression of a demonstration

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