KAMPALA, Uganda (TheBlaze/AP) — It’s been about a year since the “Kony 2012″ phenomenon went viral, but it seems fugitive African warlord Joseph Kony has made his way back into the news. A report by a watchdog group says Kony recently found safe haven in territory controlled by Sudan and that Kony benefits from Sudanese military support.
In a document entitled, “Hidden in Plain Sight,” the group Resolve said Kony recently directed killings from a location controlled by the Sudanese military. Until early this year, according to the report, Kony and some of his commanders were operating in Kafia Kingi, a disputed area along the Sudan-South Sudan border.
The executive summary of the report reads:
According to [Lord's Resistance Army] LRA defectors and other sources, LRA leader Joseph Kony himself first traveled to the Kafia Kingi enclave in 2010. He returned to Kafia Kingi in 2011 and was present there throughout parts of 2012. Along with other senior LRA commanders, he found safe harbor in a series of semipermanent encampments on the banks of the Umbelasha River near the SAF barracks in Dafak. During that time, Kony continued to direct LRA attacks against civilians in neighboring countries and issue new orders for LRA fighters. The LRA abandoned the camps in early 2013 but may remain active in the enclave.
Sudan’s harboring of the LRA in the Kafia Kingi enclave was the latest upswing in a cycle of opportunistic collaboration between the two parties that dates back to 1994. The military training, safe haven, weapons, and supplies the Sudanese government provided to the LRA were critical to the group’s growth into an increasingly deadly rebel force. By 2004, Sudanese support had waned, leading to a period of prolonged disengagement before the LRA reestablished contact with the SAF in Kafia Kingi in 2009.
Ugandan army spokesman Col. Felix Kulayigye said the report supports Uganda’s conviction that Sudan supports Kony’s LRA. Sudan has consistently denied the accusation.
African Union troops tasked with catching Kony don’t have access to Kafia Kingi, and watchdog groups say the availability of safe haven for Kony threatens progress made against the LRA.
As TheBlaze previously noted, Kony’s rebel group is blamed for tens of thousands of mutilations and killings over the last 27 years. The militia abducts children, forcing them to serve as soldiers or sex slaves, and even to kill their parents or each other to survive.
Read the report and learn more about the situation here.
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