On Wednesday, UN experts said they had been unable to identify evidence of Islamic State’s direct backing for an Islamist militia in eastern Congo that Washington had designated as a terrorist group in March.
Experts on Central Africa have been disputing whether the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), which has been accused for escalating violence in eastern Congo over the past two years, has true ties to the Middle Eastern-based Islamic State group, often known as ISIS or ISIL.
Since the army initiated operations against it in late 2019, the ADF has carried out a series of deadly revenge assaults on civilians. According to United Nations data, the gang killed roughly 850 people in Congo’s restive east last year, and bloodshed has continued this year with virtually weekly attacks.
According to experts, the militia has expanded its reach through recruitment, better terrain command, and the placing of bombs that far outpace the Congolese army’s capabilities.
They encouraged the Congolese government to strengthen the army’s intelligence and technological capacities while stepping up efforts to negotiate a disengagement and disarming with the group.