Executive Summary: 4 Key Trends in LRA Activity

1. LRA attacks continue to decline, particularly in Congo

The LRA committed 90 attacks in the first half of 2013, a 54% drop from the 194 attacks it committed in the first half of 2012. In particular, Democratic Republic of the Congo (Congo) experienced a significant drop, from 158 LRA attacks in the first half of 2012 to 66 in the first half of 2013.

2. Despite decrease in attacks, LRA killings on the rise

Despite the dramatic drop in attacks, LRA forces killed more civilians in the first half of 2013 (47) than they did in the first half of 2012 (32), a 47% increase.

3. LRA groups exploiting security vacuum in eastern CAR

The LRA committed its most notable attacks in the first half of 2013 in eastern CAR's Haut Kotto prefecture. Seleka troop deployments there have limited the access of humanitarian and protection actors, as well as US and Ugandan troops, since the March 2013 coup in Bangui. In June alone, the LRA killed 19 civilians and abducted 68 more in Haut Kotto. In addition, LRA Crisis Tracker records include 16 additional reported LRA attacks from January–June 2013 in eastern CAR that are not included in the statistics used in this brief because humanitarian and protection actors were unable to investigate and confirm the reports.

4. Nearly 5% of Ugandan combatants defect from the LRA

There remains approximately 180-200 Ugandan combatants within the LRA, comprising the core of its fighting force. In the first half of 2013, 8 of these Ugandan combatants defected in CAR and another defected in Congo, representing a loss of nearly 5% of the LRA's Ugandan combatant capacity. Another Ugandan LRA combatant was captured in Congo's Garamba National Park following a clash with park rangers. In addition, 44 other people who had been with the LRA for six months or longer returned from the LRA between January and June 2013, including 28 women and children released by LRA combatants in Bas Uele district in March.

Note: Long-term LRA returnees consist of returnees from the LRA who spent six months or more with the rebel group