Answer given by High Representative/Vice-President Ashton on behalf of the Commission
The EU has been closely involved with international efforts to resolve in the LRA issue.
Following the failure of the Juba talks, the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) continued its attacks but a counter offensive by the Ugandan army in 2008 forced them into the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Central African Republic (CAR). Although they were further weakened, Kony was not apprehended. In response to this, in 2010, interested parties of the international community formed the International Working Group on the LRA, co-chaired by the EU and the US. The IWG objective was to review the strategy against the LRA. One of its main findings was that a military approach alone was not enough. A multi-faceted approach was needed which included a coordinated civilian protection programme, early warning networks, defection and reintegration programmes and humanitarian assistance (across all LRA affected areas).
Over 2011 and 2012, the AU, the UN, International and Local NGOs, Uganda, DRC, CAR and South Sudan, with the support from donors such as the US, the EU and some EU Member States, have been steadily piecing together this multi-faceted approach.
The EU (with EUR 1,6 million) has been assisting the African Union with a specific Regional Coordination Initiative to bring together the anti-LRA strategies of the four front line states. The EU has also been at the forefront of the humanitarian assistance, providing EUR 12 million last year and EUR 9 million this year for populations affected by the LRA.
Even though the number of active combatants in the LRA is probably no more than 250, they are still able to terrorize local communities, killing and kidnapping innocent people. An estimated 300 000 people have been displaced by their activities.
The EU remains committed to the fight against the LRA until Kony and his two indicted commanders are brought to justice under the auspices of the International Criminal Court.