North Kivu: renewal of fighting between the FARDC and the M23 in Rutshuru

North Kivu: renewal of fighting between the FARDC and the M23 in Rutshuru

New clashes between the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo (FARDC) and the M23 have broke out since Friday morning in several villages in the territory of Rutshuru, in the province of North Kivu, in the east of the DRC. Local sources heard gunshots and detonations of heavy and light weapons. Hostilities continue in this part of Congo, local sources say. INFO SOS Médias Burundi

Frightened population left some villages and localities of Rutshuru, an area of hostilities, by taking the direction of Rutshuru-center. Others go to Uganda.

Our sources suggest that clashes are reported in the villages of Rangira and Rwanguba until Sunday.

“The M23 launched counter-attacks against our soldiers -FARDC at Rangira-Rwanguba in the hills of Shwema. They are shelling some positions since Thursday at 3 p.m. The FARDC are pounding those hills,” Jean Claude Mbabanze, president of civil society in Rutshuru, told the local press.

“So far, the FARDC are in a good position. The M23 have not been able to advance even a meter. Since they learned that there will be no negotiations, they are agitated. They want compel the government to negotiate with them. They think that to do so, it is necessary to cut the RN2 (National road number two) Goma-Rutshuru or else recover the city of Rutshuru to put pressure, “he added.

During these clashes, at least one civilian was killed and another wounded, according to local sources.

In a press release, the M23 announces that its positions in Rutshuru have been attacked by a coalition of several local and foreign armed groups, including the FDLR and the Mai Mai.

The movement of March 23 indicates to have defended itself. He regrets that the Congolese authorities have refused dialogue to end hostilities in eastern Congo despite the advice of the UN, heads of state in the sub-region and the African Union.

Hundreds of civilians continue to flee to Uganda, noted our reporter in the region.

The FARDC have claimed the recapture of several localities from the M23 rebels. The rebel movement which has controlled the border town of Bunagana since June 13 this year and many villages in Rutshuru, has not yet commented on the information.

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