News / Africa

DRC Rebels Advance to Goma Outskirts

People jog past a sign, with a message by the M23 movement in their campaign against rampant corruption in the Democratic Republic of Congo, in an area under controlled of the Congolese Revolutionary Army (CRA) in Rutshuru town, November 3, 2012.
People jog past a sign, with a message by the M23 movement in their campaign against rampant corruption in the Democratic Republic of Congo, in an area under controlled of the Congolese Revolutionary Army (CRA) in Rutshuru town, November 3, 2012.
TEXT SIZE - +
Nick Long
— The M23 rebels in the Democratic Republic of Congo have advanced to within a few miles of the North Kivu provincial capital, Goma, sending regular army troops fleeing.

In two days of fighting, the M23 rebels have routed the Congolese army, but have stopped short of attacking Goma.  Some reports say they have withdrawn from positions they captured on Sunday and are back where they were late Saturday, 30 kilometers from the provincial capital.

The past two days of fighting follow the breakdown of a nearly three-month ceasefire on Thursday, when government troops claimed victory.

International Crisis Group analyst Thierry Vircoulon said, "The M23 launched a counter offensive on Saturday.  They stopped fighting in the afternoon on Saturday and restarted the offensive very early in the morning on Sunday, and they reached the doorstep of Goma on Sunday."

Goma resident Augustin Musabyimana says the fighting forced people to flee a refugee camp at Kanyarucinya, about 10 kilometers from the city's center.

The camp at Kanyarucinya was on the move, Musabyimana says, and government soldiers from the front were heading to the west of Goma, as the soldiers north of Goma were collecting their families and fleeing.  He says there were many soldiers on the road, some commandeering private cars to get away.

U.N. radio in the DRC, Radio Okapi, says the Army has sent reinforcements from South Kivu province to Goma.  Radio Okapi says Army tanks and U.N. armored vehicles were guarding the approaches to Goma late Sunday.

But a spokesman for civil society in North Kivu, Omar Kavota, says the M23 has anti-tank weapons and that he is unsure tanks could stop them.

According to Thierry Vircoulon of the International Crisis Group, or ICG, the Army put up little resistance to the M23.  He says helicopters of the U.N. peacekeeping mission in Congo, MONUSCO, have taken part in the fighting.

Analysts say the M23’s military force, the so-called Congolese Revolutionary Army, probably has a maximum of 2,500 men.  The Army is believed to have about 30,000 soldiers in North Kivu province and the United Nations has about 6,000 peacekeepers there.

A U.N. report says Rwanda has supported the M23 with recruits, arms, ammunition and other supplies, and at times Rwandan army units fight alongside the rebels.  U.N. experts say Ugandan officials also have been helping the rebels.

Rwanda and Uganda vigorously deny the allegations. 

 

You May Like

Analysts Warn of Regional Proxy Conflict in Afghanistan

Analysts warn if Kabul’s neighbors do not start to cooperate, competing desires for influence could deteriorate into a bloody proxy war in the country More

Saudi Intelligence Chief Replaced

Bandar bin Sultan came under criticism for supporting al Qaida, prompting King Abdallah to wrest Syria operations away from him in February, handing them to Interior Minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef More

Poetry Magazine editor Don Share talks what makes a good poem with VOA's David Byrd

What makes a good poem? And is poetry as viable an art form as it once was? To find out, VOA's David Byrd spoke to Don Share, the editor of Poetry Magazine. More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid