Militias rule northeastern Congo through fear and bloodshed. The central government has little to no authority here. Mama Faida saw her own family murdered – and joined a militia to seek revenge.
Many of the local people see the militias as their only chance at survival. If they don’t have the right stuff to be fighters or some other ray of hope, they have to endure the horrors of life under the competing gangs. For years, the Congolese government has been powerless to stop the marauders. Not even the 20,000-strong UN peacekeeping force has proven able to protect the civilian population consistently, not matter what their strategy. DW reporter Mariel Müller rode along with the UN peacekeepers into a region off limits to most journalists.
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