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UN: The Capture of Joseph Kony Is 'Coming Pretty Soon'

Kony and the remnants of his Lord's Resistance Army are now thought to be somewhere in the Central African Republic.
May 13, 2014, 9:52pm
Photo via AP

International troops may be close to capturing Joseph Kony and his Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), according to a report by the United Nations on Monday.

The UN’s special representative to Central Africa, Abou Moussa, told reporters on Monday that the search for Kony is focused an area in the Central African Republic and that his capture is "coming pretty soon," The Associated Press reported.

Moussa’s remarks came after a press conference in which he briefed the UN Security Council on the progress made fighting the LRA and other armed groups in Central Africa.

“Significant gains have been made over the past three years. Overall, we have overseen a period of forward momentum, which must be maintained well into the post-[Joseph] Kony phase,” Moussa said.

Despite these gains, Moussa said Central African nations still face numerous security challenges and continue to depend on UN support.

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This follows the UN’s report last Tuesday that alleged the LRA is currently hiding out somewhere in the porous region between South Sudan, Sudan and the Central African Republic.

Speaking to the UN Security Council, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said that Kony and his army are likely to be seeking safe haven in the Kafia Kingi area on the border between Sudan, South Sudan and the Central African Republic.

Loosely controlled by Sudan, Kafia Kingi is a disputed area that has little governance and could provide a perfect hiding spot for armed rebel groups on the run.

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Although Sudan denies the charges that Kony or his army are anywhere in Kafia Kingi, “credible sources suggest LRA leader Joseph Kony and senior LRA commanders have recently returned to seek safe haven in Sudanese-controlled areas of the enclave," said Ban.

Moussa addressed this on Monday, saying that it is possible that Kony is in Kafia Kingi but would be difficult to confirm since his strategy is to spend several days in one area before moving on to the next since he knows “we have troops who are tracking him on a daily basis."

The LRA was established in Uganda in the 1980s and led a guerrilla uprising against the Ugandan government.

Since then, it has waged war throughout Central Africa and has been accused of war crimes and atrocities such as rape, the kidnapping of children for use as child soldiers, pillaging, murder and torture.

The International Criminal Court indicted Kony in 2005 for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

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Kony, along with the LRA, was driven out of Uganda in 2005 by Ugandan and international troops and has since been the subject of a regional manhunt.

Kony received international attention in 2012 when the American NGO Invisible Children created a viral video and campaign describing the LRA’s atrocities and demanding his capture.

What happened to KONY 2012? from INVISIBLE CHILDREN on Vimeo.

In 2011, US President Obama deployed approximately 100 US troops to Uganda to aid in the search and capture of Kony and the LRA.

The US has kept up a continued military presence in Uganda and just increased their troop presence this past March.

Follow Olivia Becker on Twitter: @obecker928