The District of Ituri has, since 1999, been through scenes of violent clashes between various armed groups and local militias because of a bloody inter-ethnic war that caused a lot of abuse and violations of human rights and international humanitarian law by enormous loss of life, theft, rape, looting of property, burning houses and massive displacement of the civilian population.
Image 1 and 2: consequence of the war in Ituri.
This interethnic conflict which was at its origin, a land dispute between some Lendu farmers and Hema breeders took later a bigger scale. Ignorance of laws by some and poor implementation of these laws by others and the action of foreign forces, in this case the Ugandan army that controlled the area, all this had led to unprecedented violence.
Later, the claims of land has given way to political, economic and military ambitions of traditional armed groups that operated in the region and these ones are subsequently turned into real armies relatively organized with all the collateral damage and war crimes that ensued.
The cycle of violence described above began in June 1999 in the Walendu Pitsi in Djugu territory. The absence of state authority during this period of war, the miscarriage of justice and rivalries between rebel leaders have promoted the development of the conflict that has taken on new dimensions over time.
Image 3 and 4: result of the war in Ituri.
Like a contagion, violence won the localities of Laudjo, Sanduku, Jiba, Linga, Joba, Dhendro, Ame and Libi before spreading to the entire first Djugu and then Irumu. The conflict was evolving as time, from 2001, each side had invested in the establishment of a self-defense forces subject to military training, youth recruitment and so on. Little by little, traditional armed groups integrated gun in their arsenal and were transformed later by politico-military movements with genuine relatively organized armies.
Image 5 and 6: Nyankunde General reference Hospital, consequence of the war in Ituri.
The Union of Congolese Patriots (UPC) was the first initiative of its kind; His coming to power in August 2002 had prompted the rival groups to follow the example including the Party for Unity and Safeguarding of the Integrity of Congo (PUSIC), the Front of Nationalists and Integrationnistes (FNI), the Armed Forces the Congolese People (FAPC) and the Popular Front for Democracy in Congo (CDPF). Each group had sought to have a space under its control and on which it was exercising the powers of the state. The climax was reached when in 2003, violence reached Bunia, so far spared from the violence that raged throughout the Ituri district. There were clashes of March 6, 2003 and the bloody events of the months of May and June of that year that led to the massive displacement of the population to the North Kivu.
Several important facts have finally contributed to the restoration of peace in Ituri and to the gradual improvement in the security situation in Bunia as well as within the Ituri district. We cite the deployment of Artemis Forces in 2003 and their replacement by the United Nations brigade (peacekeepers); the establishment of the interim administration under the agreements of Luanda 6 September 2002; deployments of FARDC brigades and especially launching programs PNDDR / DRC in May 2005.
Image 7 and 8: consequence of the war in Ituri.
It is imperative to note an important fact to know, despite the development of the conflict, the local population, the main victim of the reign of violence, had demonstrated its commitment to promoting the return of peace. One had to observe, even at the height of the conflict, the dynamics of reconciliation between antagonistic communities and other stakeholders previously separated by this conflict. In this context, there were several notable meetings between Hema and Lendu in Bunia as well as elsewhere. Mudzipela meeting on the 29/09/2003, that of Nizi on 23/10/2003, that of 21/11/2003 in Djugu which allowed the holding of several meetings between the 22 and 23 November 2003 in Basa, Pimbo, Kalo, Djugu and Dhodjo. Further meetings were held in Katoto 30/11/2003 and 07/11/2003 and in Fataki on the same date. On 01 January 2004, a major reconciliation ceremony was held in Zumbe Lendu community known as bastion of fighters who have committed several abuses of human rights. On the occasion of these meetings some people who were detained and held hostage by militias had been released and handed over to their relatives. There were several other agreements that ensued.
Image 9 and 10: Nyankunde General reference Hospital, consequence of the war in Ituri.
Besides all these agreements, and despite the various measures taken by the Congolese government to end the Ituri drama with all the efforts of the international community, there has been hitherto taken for durable solutions to resolve land conflicts were behind these tragedies the area.
The localities of Kobu, Linga and several others in Irumu territories experiencing resurgence not only disputes between dealers and local farmers, but also between merchants and residents who dispute plots of land, plots etc.
Image 11 and 12: consequence of the war in Ituri..
Following this history, which pushed us to create this organization:
Since Ituri has long been a target inter-ethnic war, plus at least five years;
Whereas Ituriene population suffered serious and flagrant violations of their rights in this war;
Given the need to oppose such violations in all forms;
Given the need to participate in the positive direction in the Ituri pacification process in particular and the DRC in general;
Considering Law n ° 004/2001 of 20 July laying down general provisions applied to non-profit organizations and charitable institutions;
Given that individuals are free to create philanthropic, sociological, cultural… for a purpose of general interest, manage and administer by themselves;
Consider that it was urgent, opportunity and need to build up an association to deal with all the above mentioned social atrocities.
So it was created in Bunia, capital of Ituri District, Province Orientale, Democratic Republic of Congo, on 30 June 2005, a nongovernmental organization and an association Without Profit Goal called Action Justice Paix, AJP in acronym
Action Justice and Peace, AJP in acronym, is a Non Governmental Organization, non-denominational promoting and defending human rights and development working in Ituri since 2005. Its vision is to see a world where there is justice, equality and respect of human rights. It operates in the areas of promotion of human rights, promotion of development and the fight against poverty.