News / Africa

Rebels, Army Clash in Eastern DRC

M23 rebels sit in a vehicle as they withdraw from the eastern Congo town of Goma, Dec. 1, 2012 (file photo).
M23 rebels sit in a vehicle as they withdraw from the eastern Congo town of Goma, Dec. 1, 2012 (file photo).
Nick Long
— There is renewed fighting in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo between the M23 rebels and the government army.  It's the first major clashes between the two sides since the rebels withdrew from the city of Goma last year. .   

Both sides are blaming each other for starting the fighting early on Monday.  The clashes, 12 kilometers north of Goma, have been intense, with aircraft bombarding the M23 who, according to civilians, have been pushed back.

A steady stream of civilians began heading south towards Goma during the morning.  Hardly any soldiers could be seen among them, and civilians told VOA the army has been advancing.

Among the civilians evacuating the war zone was Mariana Bigaruka, a high school student.

"I went to school at 6 a.m., I could hear gunfire and could see aircraft flying over firing missiles," said Bigaruka.

She said civilians initially took refuge at a base of the U.N. peacekeeping mission MONUSCO, but the peacekeepers advised civilians to move further towards Goma.  

The fighting went on until late afternoon, she said.

"The FARDC or government army has been advancing, pushing back the M23.  This is very encouraging," she said.

The last round of heavy fighting between the government forces and the rebels, in November, started with a rebel offensive, which was pushed back by the army with support from MONUSCO aircraft.

But in the five days of fighting that followed, the rebels broke through several lines of defense and the army retreated from Goma.

Peace talks between the government and the rebels have broken down since the announcement in March that the U.N. would deploy an intervention brigade in the region.  The force, made up of regional soldiers, is authorized to attack eastern Congo's many armed groups.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is visiting the Great Lakes region this week, including a stop in Congo's capital Kinshasa on Wednesday.

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debatei
X
Shelley Schlender
July 24, 2014 6:43 PM
In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Death Toll From Israel-Gaza Conflict Surpasses 700

Gaza officials say a shelling hit a compound housing a United Nations-run school in the Gaza Strip, killing more than a dozen people, during an Israeli offensive in the area. Heavy fighting between the Israeli military and Hamas militants continued on Thursday, pushing up the death toll. So far, more than 730 Palestinians and 35 Israelis have been killed in the conflict. VOA's Scott Bobb has the latest from Jerusalem.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Researchers Target Low-Cost Avatar Technology

Scientists at the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies say 3-dimensional representations could revolutionize social media. Elizabeth Lee has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid