Uganda: March 23, 2005


More bad news from northern Uganda. The holdout LRA factions are attempting to sow as much terror as possible in the villages and refugee camps around the northern Ugandan city of Gulu. It appears that  the rebels are trying to send a message that they are still there, and have not gone away. To emphasize this, there was an LRA attack on a refugee camp at Paicho where four civilians were killed. (Paicho is northeast of Gulu.) Survivors reported an LRA thug "hacked off a woman's lips" during the raid. An attack like this is an atrocity meant to incite fear and outrage. LRA factions have also kidnapped from 50 to 60 people from refugee camps around Gulu since March 16. The army believes that the LRA faction committing most of the atrocities is under the control of LRA deputy commander Vincent Otti. The size of Otti's command is not known, but is not  believed to be large. Some believe this group is only about a dozen men, although northern officials believe it could contain as many as 300 people (fighters and slaves). Though the government says LRA holdouts are shrinking in number, the viciousness of their attacks has not diminished.




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