Army for the Liberation of Rwanda (ALIR)

Description

The FAR was the army of the Rwandan Hutu regime that carried out the genocide of 500,000 or more Tutsis and regime opponents in 1994. The Interahamwe was the civilian militia force that carried out much of the killing. The groups merged and recruited additional fighters after they were forced from Rwanda into the Democratic Republic of Congo (then Zaire) in 1994.

Activities

They are now often known as the Army for the Liberation of Rwanda (ALIR), which is the armed branch of the PALIR or Party for the Liberation of Rwanda.
The group seeks to topple Rwanda’s Tutsi-dominated government, reinstitute Hutu control, and, possibly, complete the genocide. In 1996, a message¾allegedly from the ALIR¾threatened to kill the US Ambassador to Rwanda and other US citizens. In 1999, ALIR guerrillas critical of alleged US-UK support for the Rwandan regime kidnapped and killed eight foreign tourists, including two US citizens, in a game park on the Congo-Uganda border. In the current Congolese war, the ALIR is allied with Kinshasa against the Rwandan invaders. The Government of Rwanda recently transferred to US custody three former ALIR insurgents who are suspects in the 1999 Bwindi Park murder case.

Strength

Several thousand ALIR regular forces operate alongside the Congolese army on the front lines of the Congo civil war, while a like number of ALIR guerrillas operate in eastern Congo closer to the Rwandan border.

Location

Mostly Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda, but some operate in Burundi.

External Aid

The Democratic Republic of the Congo has provided ALIR forces in Congo with training, arms, and supplies.