Incident Summary:

8/29/2002: Ethnic Hema militia from the Front pour la Reconciliation et la Paix or the Front for Peace and Reconciliation took Human Rights Minister Ntumba Luaba hostage near Bunia, Ituri province, Congo (Kinshasa). Luaba had been on a mission to find delegates for a peace conference at the time that he was kidnapped; officials stated that he had approached a local chief to invite him to attend the conference and was taken hostage instead. Three others from Luaba's delegation were also kidnapped. The abductors demanded the release of at least ten of their own people in return for the ministers' safe return. All four of the abductees were released on September 1, 2002. The abduction had been based on a misunderstanding; the ten individuals the militia believed were being held captive were not in custody and were flown back to Bunia in order to facilitate the release of Luaba and his delegation.



Democratic Republic of the Congo

Sub-Saharan Africa

region/u.s. state:


Near Bunia

Location Details:
Near the northeastern town of Bunia on the Ugandan border

Attack Information
Type of Attack (more) Hostage Taking (Kidnapping)
Successful Attack? (more) Yes
Target Information (more)
Target Type: Government (General)
Name of Entity Government ministers
Specific Description Human Rights Minister Ntumba Luaba and his delegation
Nationality of Target Democratic Republic of the Congo
Target Type: Journalists & Media
Name of Entity Les Coulisses' newspaper
Specific Description Nicaise Kibelbel, editor of 'Les Coulisses' newspaper
Nationality of Target Democratic Republic of the Congo
Target Type: Violent Political Party
Name of Entity A rebel splinter group
Specific Description Thomas Lubanga, leader of Union of Congolese Patriots
Nationality of Target Democratic Republic of the Congo
Additional Information
Hostages Yes
Number of Hostages 4
US Hostages 0
Days of Kidnapping 3
Outcome Hostage(s) released by perpetrators
Ransom No
Property Damage No
Weapon Information
Type Sub-type
Weapon Details
No specific mention of weapons was made
Additional Information
Suicide Attack?No
Part of Multiple Incident?No
Criterion 1 (more) Yes
Criterion 2 (more) Yes
Criterion 3 (more) Yes
Doubt Terrorism Proper (more) No
Additional Information One source states that the assailants demanded the release of 10 people while two sources state that it was 12 people.
Perpetrator Group Information
Group Name Claimed Responsibility
Front for Peace and Reconciliation (FRP) Yes (Confirmed: Unknown; Mode: Unknown)
Perpetrator Statistics
Number of Perpetrators Unknown
Number of Captured Perpetrators 0
Casualty Information
Total Number of Casualties 0 Fatalities / 0 Injured
Total Number of Fatalities 0
Number of U.S. Fatalities 0
Number of Perpetrator Fatalities 0
Total Number of Injured 0
Number of U.S. Injured 0
Number of Perpetrators Injured 0
Finbarr O'Reilly, "Minister kidnapped in Congo's lawless east," Reuters News, August 30, 2002.
"DRCongo human rights minister kidnapped by rebels," Agence France Presse, August 30, 2002.
"Kidnapped minister released in return for 10-man Hema delegation," UN Regional Information Network IRIN, September 2, 2002.