News / Africa

DRC Army Withdraws from Rebel Zone

Nick Long
Pro-government forces in the Democratic Republic of Congo have pulled back from territory they took from the M23 rebels in the past week.  Civilians in the reoccupied zone are protesting that they wanted the army to stay. 
 
Civilians in Kiwanja, a small town in eastern Congo’s North Kivu province, woke up Sunday to find the army that reoccupied the town two days before had left during the night.  Many people were bitterly disappointed.  
 
The army was guarding us well, says this woman, and says the people do not want the M23 rebels back.
 
Another civilian who also preferred to withhold his identity said an M23 occupation is a worrying prospect.
 
He says when the M23 soldiers are here, business is paralyzed - and there are killings, forced recruitments and sexual violence. But when the government army is here activities are back to normal. 
 
Kiwanja and the neighboring town of Rutshuru were occupied by the M23 since July last year, but they withdrew from this area last Thursday when fighting broke out between rival M23 factions, led by Sultani Makenga and Bosco Ntaganda. 
 
The area was then occupied by government forces and pro-government militias, including the ethnic-Hutu Nyatura militia and Rwandan-Hutu rebels, the FDLR. 
 
They disappeared Saturday, and the M23 arrived peacefully early Sunday to take up their former positions in the two towns.
 
The peaceful handover of the area appears to have been arranged between the government and the rebels with international mediation.
 
That could indicate an agreement between the Makenga faction of the M23 and the government is imminent, in which this faction might agree to join the government army.
 
Vianney Kazarama is spokesman for the Makenga faction.  He told VOA there could be a peaceful solution to the current situation.
 
He says if there is an agreement to create, with external oversight, what he calls a  professional army that would be a good thing, and the M23 would be associated with the process along with the government and external partners.
 
Senior officers from the other M23 faction led by Bosco Ntaganda declined to be interviewed by VOA.  That faction appears to be militarily weaker than Makenga’s group.  It is certainly weaker diplomatically as Ntaganda is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of recruiting child soldiers.

You May Like

Video Russia Accused of Abusing Interpol to Pursue Opponents

Report from member of British think tank says Russian extradition requests keep targets from traveling More

US Lawmakers Weigh Turkish Anti-terror Moves

Turkey’s two-pronged campaign against Islamic State militants, Kurdish PKK forces provokes mixed reactions on Capitol Hill More

What Happens When Americans Eat What They Tweet

You are what you tweet, according to new maps that show a correlation between obesity and tweeting about high-fat foods More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: JAIMES KIBINDI BINDI from: LONDON
March 03, 2013 6:56 PM
I BELIEVE THAT 80% OF INFORMATION ARE JUST TO DEMONISE Mr RUNIGA JEAN MARIE AND HIS M23. I PERSONALLY WAS INTERVIEWING REFUGEES IN KIWANZA AND RUSHURU CAMPS HALF AN HOUR BEFORE THE CRIMINAL ACT THAT LEAD TWO OFFICERS DOWN AND SIX CIVILIANS. THESE ACT WAS PERPETRATED BY FDLR DISSIDENTS, SHOULD YOU BE AWARE NO GOVERNMENT SOLDIER OR OFFICIAL HAS BEEN INTO THE AREA SINCE IT WAS TAKEN OVER BY M23. AS SEEN TODAY, SULTANI MAKENGA IS NOW PRO-GOVERNMENT OF KINSHASA AFTER BEING CORRUPTED BY JOSEPH KABILA , HE IS ALSO WORKING WITH FDLR, THIS IS WHY FDLR LEFT RUSHURU WITHOUT ANY RESISTANCE. PEOPLE ARE MORE IN PEACE WITH M23 THAN FDLR OR THE GOVERNMENT.( SAID THE KIWANZA CAMP STAFF. WHY ARE YOU GIVING WRONG INFORMATION I CAN PROVIDE VIDEO AS EVIDENCE.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Russia Accused of Abusing Interpol to Pursue Opponentsi
X
Henry Ridgwell
July 28, 2015 9:53 PM
A British pro-democracy group has accused Russia of abusing the global law enforcement agency Interpol by requesting the arrest and extradition of political opponents. A new report by the group notes such requests can mean the accused are unable to travel and are often unable to open bank accounts. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Russia Accused of Abusing Interpol to Pursue Opponents

A British pro-democracy group has accused Russia of abusing the global law enforcement agency Interpol by requesting the arrest and extradition of political opponents. A new report by the group notes such requests can mean the accused are unable to travel and are often unable to open bank accounts. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Genome Initiative Urgently Moves to Freeze DNA Before Species Go Extinct

Earth is in the midst of its sixth mass extinction. The last such event was caused by an asteroid 66 million years ago. It killed off the dinosaurs and practically everything else. So scientists are in a race against time to classify the estimated 11 million species alive today. So far only 2 million are described by science, and researchers are worried many will disappear before they even have a name. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Scientists: One-Dose Malaria Cure is Possible

Scientists have long been trying to develop an effective protection and cure for malaria - one of the deadliest diseases that affects people in tropical areas, especially children. As the World Health Organization announces plans to begin clinical trials of a promising new vaccine, scientists in South Africa report that they too are at an important threshold. George Putic reports, they are testing a compound that could be a single-dose cure for malaria.
Video

Video Special Olympics Athletes Meet International Friends

The Special Olympics are underway in Los Angeles, California, with athletes from 165 countries participating in an event that gives people with intellectual disabilities the chance to take part in an international competition. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports that for athletes and their families, it's also an opportunity to make new friends in an international setting.
Video

Video 'New York' Magazine Features 35 Cosby Accusers

The latest issue of 'New York' magazine features 35 women who say they were drugged and raped by film and television celebrity Bill Cosby. The women are aged from 44 to 80 and come from different walks of life and races. The magazine interviewed each of them separately, but Zlatica Hoke reports their stories are similar.
Video

Video US Calls Fight Against Human Trafficking a Must Win

The United States is promising not to give up its fight against what Secretary of State John Kerry calls the “scourge” of modern slavery. Officials released the country’s annual human trafficking report Monday – a report that’s being met with some criticism. VOA’s National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more from the State Department.
Video

Video Iran Nuclear Pact Wins Few New US Congressional Backers

Later this week, President Barack Obama returns from a trip to Africa to confront a U.S. Congress roiled by the nuclear accord with Iran, an agreement that has received the blessing of the U.N. Security Council. Days of intensive lobbying and testimony by top administration officials have won few new congressional supporters of the pact. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports.
Video

Video Washington DC Underground Streetcar Station to Become Arts Venue

Abandoned more than 50 years ago, the underground streetcar station in Washington D.C.’s historic DuPont Circle district is about to be reborn. The plan calls for turning the spacious underground platforms - once meant to be a transportation hub, - into a unique space for art exhibitions, presentations, concerts and even a film set. Roman Mamonov has more from beneath the streets of the U.S. capital. Joy Wagner narrates his report.
Video

Video Europe’s Twin Crises Collide in Greece as Migrant Numbers Soar

Greece has replaced Italy as the main gateway for migrants into Europe, with more than 100,000 arrivals in the first six months of 2015. Many want to move further into Europe and escape Greece’s economic crisis, but they face widespread dangers on the journey overland through the Balkans. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Stink Intensifies as Lebanon’s Trash Crisis Continues

After the closure of a major rubbish dump a week ago, the streets of Beirut are filling up with trash. Having failed to draw up a plan B, politicians are struggling to deal with the problem. John Owens has more for VOA from Beirut.
Video

Video Paris Rolls Out Blueprint to Fight Climate Change

A U.N. climate conference in December aims to produce an ambitious agreement to fight heat-trapping greenhouse gases. But many local governments are not waiting, and have drafted their own climate action plans. That’s the case with Paris — which is getting special attention, since it’s hosting the climate summit. Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at the transformation of the French capital into an eco-city.
Video

Video Racially Diverse Spider-Man Takes Center Stage

Whether it’s in a comic book or on the big screen, fans have always known the man behind the Spider-Man mask as Peter Parker. But that is changing, at least in the comic book world. Marvel Comics announced that a character called Miles Morales will replace Peter Parker as Spider-Man in a new comic book series. He is half Latino, half African American, and he is quite popular among comic book fans. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports from Los Angeles.
Video

Video Critics of Japan Defense Policy Focus on Okinawa

In Okinawa, many locals have long complained that Tokyo places an unfair burden on the tiny island by locating most of Japan's U.S. military bases there. As Japan's government moves toward strengthening and expanding the country's defense policies, opponents of those plans are joining local protesters in Okinawa, voicing concern about where the country is headed. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Okinawa.
Video

Video IS Uses Chemical Weapons in Syrian Attack

Islamic State militants have added a new weapon in their arsenal of fear: chemical weapons. VOA Kurdish service reporter Zana Omer was on the scene within hours of a recent attack in Hasakah, Syria, and has details of the subsequent investigation, in this report narrated by Miguel Amaya.
Video

Video Historic Symbol Is Theme of Vibrant New Show

A new exhibit in Washington is paying tribute to the American flag with a wide and eclectic selection of artwork that uses the historic symbol as its central theme. VOA’s Julie Taboh was at the DC Chamber of Commerce for the show’s opening.

VOA Blogs