DRC: M23 confirms the arrest of Burundian soldiers in the East of the Country

DRC: intense fighting between the army and M23 rebels

Violent clashes broke out on Monday in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), pitting the Congolese army, supported by local militias, against the M23 rebels.

Fighting rages between the Congolese army and the M23 rebels in the eastern part of the country. According to reports on the ground, detonations of heavy weapons rang out throughout the day on Monday, in the territory of Rutshuru, near the border with Uganda, where the M23 exercises control over several localities. The villages of Luve and Kiyeye were particularly affected, with shootings reported near the MONUSCO base in Kihondo, while massive population movements were observed as far away as Nyanzale.

Local sources confirmed that the fighting has spread to the Mabenga-Rwindi axis, located in Virunga Park, while the army and its allies face attacks from the M23 and its supporters.

Thousands of displaced people…

The humanitarian situation is worsening with thousands of people fleeing to remote areas and mountains to escape the violence. Armored vehicles belonging to SADC troops were targeted in an earlier attack, causing injuries to several people, including a Tanzanian soldier.

The European Union expressed great concern over this escalation of violence and the devastating impact on the civilian population, highlighting human rights violations and the deterioration of the humanitarian situation.

The M23, which returned to the forefront in 2022 to demand respect for previous peace agreements, insists on the need for direct dialogue with Kinshasa, which has so far rejected any negotiation proposal. The Congolese authorities are demanding strict conditions for any dialogue with Rwanda, accused of supporting the M23 by several international bodies.