News / Africa

UN Reasserts Mission’s Mandate in DRC

UN troops in Democratic Republic of the Congo, one day after Nzobo Yalobo, a new rebel group in Equateur, attacked the provincial capital of Mbandaka.UN troops in Democratic Republic of the Congo, one day after Nzobo Yalobo, a new rebel group in Equateur, attacked the provincial capital of Mbandaka.
x
UN troops in Democratic Republic of the Congo, one day after Nzobo Yalobo, a new rebel group in Equateur, attacked the provincial capital of Mbandaka.
UN troops in Democratic Republic of the Congo, one day after Nzobo Yalobo, a new rebel group in Equateur, attacked the provincial capital of Mbandaka.
Nick Long
KINSHASA, DRC — The United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Congo, known as MONUSCO, is denying accusations that its forces have allowed rebels in eastern Congo to advance unopposed. The mission says it has resisted, and will continue to resist, all threats to the civilian population including those from the M23 rebel movement. 

Following the capture by the M23 rebels of two strategic towns in eastern Congo in the past few days, the U.N. is under pressure to declare whether it will stop further rebel advances.   

Congolese and international media have reported that the mission has not been supporting the Congolese army robustly against the M23, who are dissident former units of the Congolese army.

MONUSCO deployed armored personal carriers at the town of Rutshuru Center last week, but the APCs did not open fire when the rebels walked into the town without resistance.

The Congolese army had already retreated from Rutshuru at that point.

MONUSCO’s military spokesman Colonel Felix Basse says MONUSCO was following its mandate at Rutshuru and elsewhere in the Congo of protecting civilians.

"In Rutshuru Center what happened - when the Congolese army withdrew from its position, no harassment happened, I mean there was no direct threat to the civilian population," he said.

Colonel Basse added that the M23 rebels know MONUSCO is committed to protecting civilians.

"We had to engage with our armored personnel carriers the M23 positions when we felt the civilian population might be under threat from the M23 rebellion, and we engaged the M23 with our attack helicopters when we felt that a threat was going to spill over to the civilians," he said.

The head of MONUSCO, Special representative Roger Meece, indicated on Tuesday that the mission regards Goma, the capital of North Kivu province, a town about 70 kilometers from Rutshuru Center as a key population center which must be defended.

He told journalists that MONUSCO was taking all necessary measures against threats, above all to population centers, including deploying armored units to block an advance on Goma and other towns.

A U.N. Indian peacekeeper was killed in heavy fighting at the town of Bunagana last Friday. The M23 rebels withdrew their forces from Rutshuru on Monday and have offered to negotiate with the government.
 
The government of the Democratic Republic of Congo accuses Rwanda of supporting the M23, an accusation Rwanda has denied. The U.N. special representative said the mission had received considerable information suggesting Rwandan support for the rebellion.

You May Like

ASEAN Ministers Set to Push for South China Sea Agreements

According to documents obtained by VOA Khmer, ministers will stand up for 'freedom of navigation, unimpeded lawful maritime commerce, trade and over flight' More

Puerto Rico Defaults on $58M Debt Payment

Payment was due Saturday, default is first in country's 117 years as a United States possession More

Turkish Public Fears Jihadists More Than Kurds

Turkey facing twin threats of terrorism by Islamic State and PKK Kurdish separatists, says President Erdogan’s ruling AK Party More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Philips from: Uganda
July 12, 2012 8:20 AM
In all these, where is the African Union? Is it waiting for western powers to intervene in the DRC then it begins making noise that the western powers are interfering in African affairs? The African Standby Force should by now have intervened in Mali, DRC and many other trouble spots in Africa but alas. What can and will African Union do to ensure peace and stability in Africa?

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Communityi
X
Sharon Behn
August 03, 2015 2:23 PM
A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh 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 Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan 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 Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
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.

VOA Blogs