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Senate defense panel OKs $50 million more to find Joseph Kony

The Senate defense committee has agreed to spend another $50 million on the Pentagon’s manhunt for African rebel leader Joseph Kony, The Hill newspaper reported.

The Senate Armed Services Committee approved the money to "enhance and expand" intelligence and surveillance support for the roughly 100 American special forces troops and their Ugandan counterparts tracking Kony and his Lord's Resistance Army, The Hill reported.

The money is included in a fiscal 2013 defense bill draft approved Thursday, The Hill said.

Stuart Price / AFP - Getty Images

Lord's Resistance Army leader Joseph Kony answers journalists' questions at Ri-Kwamba, in Southern Sudan in 2005.

Kony has evaded the region's militaries for nearly three decades, kidnapping tens of thousands of children to fill the ranks of his Lord's Resistance Army and serve as sex slaves as he moves through the bush. Thousands have been killed by his brutal army.

In 2005, the International Criminal Court indicted Kony, along with four other LRA commanders, for crimes against humanity and war crimes. Two of them have since died.

Kony was thrust into the spotlight earlier this year when the advocacy group Invisible Children’s video, "Kony 2012," highlighting chilling mutilations, rapes and murders carried out by his spell-bound fighters, went viral on the Internet.

Last year President Barack Obama sent the 100 troops to help eliminate the LRA.

The United States since 2008 has provided about $33 million to support the battle against the LRA, The New York Times reported in October when Obama sent the troops.

Ugandan forces on May 12 captured Caesar Acellam, a Kony senior commander, after a brief fight with rebels near the Congo-Central African Republic border in what an analyst said was an "intelligence coup" for forces hunting for Kony.

In 2005, NBC News correspondent Keith Morrison traveled to Uganda to report on a little-known war being waged by rebel leader Joseph Kony and his Lord's Resistance Army (LRA). "Children of War" documented how the LRA systematically terrorized countless communities and abducted tens of thousands of children to fill its ranks.

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