UN calls for immediate action after reported killings of children in DR Congo

UN calls for immediate action after reported killings of children in DR Congo

UNITED NATIONS, Nov. 27 (Xinhua) -- The United Nations on Wednesday called on the authorities of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to take immediate action in light of reports of disappearance and assassination of young men and children in the capital Kinshasa.

"According to information received, which is currently being verified, at least 20 people, including 12 children, have been reportedly killed," said a news release issued by the UN Children' s Fund (UNICEF) and the UN peacekeeping mission in DRC (MONUSCO).

"Investigations must be undertaken by judicial authorities so as those responsible for these acts are brought to justice, in accordance with the Congolese Criminal Code," it said.

The two organizations said the "alarming reports" coincide with the start of the Operation Likofi (Punch in Lingala) undertaken from Nov. 15 to Feb. 15 next year by Congolese authorities to curb urban delinquency, according to the press release.

"UNICEF and MONUSCO call for immediate steps to be taken by Congolese authorities to put an end to such acts," it stated.

They recalled that the state must in all circumstances ensure that human rights are protected and that children receive special protection, in line with Congolese laws and international treaties and conventions.

"The United Nations reiterates its willingness to support the Congolese government in its search for durable solutions to problems regarding the social reintegration of children and youths, " it added.