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2013-10-16

AFRICA/CONGO DR - North Kivu: Rwandan and Ugandan troops to strengthen the M23 rebels, civil society denounces

Kinshasa (Agenzia Fides) - "Several battalions of the Rwandan (RDF) and Ugandan (UPDF) army have entered the territory of the Democratic Republic of the Congo to strengthen the rebellion of the M23, in preparation for renewed hostilities against our national army" denounces a memorandum sent to Congolese President Joseph Kabila by the Coordination of civil society in North Kivu.
The document, sent to Fides Agency, highlights the detailed movements of troops sent from Kampala and Kigali to the eastern DRC. In particular, on October 11, "9 trucks full of Rwandan and Ugandan soldiers entered the border post of Bunagana (in Rutshuru territory) accompanied by a battle tank, several rocket launchers and an imposing artillery". These troops were spread over 4 strongholds held by the M23 in the area.
On October 13, other two Rwandan battalions crossed the border in the Virunga Park.
In other areas the Rwandan military installed some heavy weapons on strategic hills in support of the rebels of the M23.
The memorandum also claims that a meeting to coordinate the next offensive in North Kivu was held in a hotel in Gisenyi (Rwanda) in the presence of the high command of the Rwandan army and M23 movement. Civil society calls on the authorities in Kinshasa to take the necessary measures to prevent a new aggression to people living in the area and the national army in charge of defending them. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 16/10/2013)

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