Uganda: Yet Another Northern Rebellion



July 16, 2009; Is the Uganda Peoples Front (UPF) for real? The "new" rebel group may also go by the name Popular Patriotic Front -- or is that another rebel organization, preparing to operate in western Uganda (around the oil fields)? The government claims the UPF exists and has roots in the north. The government has an alleged UPF "organization document" available on the internet. Last month the government claimed that former Lords Resistance Army supporters in northern Uganda (Gulu was mentioned) were planning on starting a new resistance group. The accused northerners say the government is lying. The government claims that the would-be rebels have a three-part agenda: (1) remove President Yoweri Museveni from power and end his dictatorship; (2) create a democratic government; (3) "peaceably" transfer power in Uganda via elections to "succeeding" democratic governments.

July 13, 2009: The government said it would arrest Sudan president Omar al-Bashir if he entered the country. The International Criminal Court (ICC) has issued a warrant for Bashir's arrest. The charge is war crimes in Darfur.

July 3, 2009: A senior military commander asked the Kenyan government to disarm Pokot tribal warriors who are conducting cattle raids across the Kenya-Uganda border into Uganda. The Ugandan military is trying to disarm Pokot and Karamojong tribesmen in order to reduce violence and stop cattle rustling in the area.

July 2, 2009: Uganda is considering passing a law that would permit trying LRA leader Joseph Kony in a Ugandan national court, using the International Criminal Court indictment for war crimes. This sounds technical, but the ICC has said there is a way to make this work. Presumably Kony would be tried in Kampala instead of The Hague, Netherlands. The Uganda venue might be more attractive to Kony; he would have supporters on hand and as these things go, if Kony signed a permanent peace agreement, the government might urge the court to be lenient.



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