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

Lion Cecil's Killing Sparks 'Canned Hunting' Debate in S. Africa

Conservationists believe incident, which triggered worldwide outrage, will reshape debate about practice in which hunters are allowed to target animals bred for hunting More

Taliban's New Leader Says Jihad Will Continue

Top US Afghan diplomat also meets with Pakistani, Afghan officials following news of Mullah Omar's death More

Environmentalists Issue Warning on Mekong Biodiversity

Scientists say decades of economic development, hydropower-dam construction, lax law enforcement and trafficking have taken their toll 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.
Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missionsi
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X
George Putic
July 30, 2015 8:59 PM
Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video 'Metal Muscles' Flex a New Bionic Hand

Artificial limbs, including the most complex of them – the human hand – are getting more life-like and useful due to constant advances in tiny hydraulic, pneumatic and electric motors called actuators. But now, as VOA’s George Putic reports, scientists in Germany say the future of the prosthetic hand may lie not in motors but in wires that can ‘remember’ their shape.
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 'Positive Atmosphere' Points Toward TPP Trade Deal in Hawaii

Talks on a major new trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations are said to be nearing completion in Hawaii. Some trade experts say the "positive atmosphere" at the discussions could mean a deal is within reach, but there is still hard bargaining to be done over many issues and products, including U.S. drugs and Japanese rice. VOA's Jim Randle 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 '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 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.

VOA Blogs