The report, which was based on months of independent research in the region, gives the clearest picture yet of the underpinnings of the fighting in eastern Congo, revealing a sordid network of intertwined interests in Congo and Rwanda that have fueled the continuing chaos.
The report's findings on the current conflict are likely to strain already tense relations between the countries, providing ammunition for each. Congolese officials have accused
The independent experts found extensive evidence of high-level communication between the government of
The report said that the calls were "frequent and long enough to indicate at least extensive sharing of information."
In interviews, several of General Nkunda's fighters described Rwandan soldiers' helping the rebels inside
It also investigated how General Nkunda was paying for his militia, documenting hundreds of thousands of dollars in payments for taxes in territory that he controls. The report also named prominent business executives who had backed him financially.
Congo's military, meanwhile, has been collaborating with the Hutu militia that is led by the authors of the Rwandan genocide, according to the report. The weak and undisciplined Congolese Army has frequently relied on help from these fighters in battling General Nkunda's troops.
In exchange for ammunition, the militia fighters have helped in numerous offensives, the report said, citing by name several senior Congolese military officers who had handed over matÃ©riel to the Hutu forces. According to satellite phone records, senior military and intelligence figures in
"It is obvious that Rwandan authorities and Congolese authorities are aware of support provided to rebel groups," Jason K. Stearns, the coordinator for the five- member panel that produced the report, said Friday at a news conference at the United Nations. "They haven't done anything to bring it to an end."
He said the Congolese government said that it had no policy to aid the Hutu militia but that there might be support from individual military commanders. Both governments said that telephone records showing conversations between officials and rebels did not constitute support, he added.
Neil MacFarquhar contributed reporting from the United Nations.
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"The master class has always declared the wars; the subject class has always fought the battles. The master class has had all to gain and nothing to lose, while the subject class has had nothing to gain and everything to lose--especially their lives." Eugene Victor Debs