UN board: 2 experts likely murdered

by Congo militia members

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — A United Nations board of inquiry says two U.N. experts were likely slain in March by militiamen from Congo’s violence-torn Kasai region, but it said further investigation and judicial proceedings are needed to determine the identity and motive of the killers.

The board’s executive summary, which was obtained Wednesday by The Associated Press, says that “there was a reasonable likelihood that the killings were committed after consultation with other local tribal actors.”

Michael Sharp of the United States and Zaida Catalan, a dual national of Sweden and Chile, disappeared March 12. Their bodies were discovered in shallow graves 15 days later.

The board says there is “a reasonable likelihood” that the same militiamen were responsible for the deaths of a Congolese interpreter and three motorcycle drivers accompanying the U.N. experts.

Iraq asks UN to collect evidence

to prosecute Islamic State

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Iraq is asking the U.N. Security Council for assistance in collecting evidence to prosecute extremists from the Islamic State group for possible crimes against humanity.

Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari said in a letter to U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres circulated Wednesday that his government and the United Kingdom are working on a draft Security Council resolution seeking assistance.

It was sent more than five months after human rights lawyer Amal Clooney urged Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to send a letter to the council so it can vote to set up an investigation into crimes by IS militants in Iraq.

Clooney represents victims of IS rapes and kidnappings from Iraq’s Yazidi community. The lawyer, who is the wife of actor George Clooney, said in early March that the world’s nations must not let IS “get away with genocide.”