Hostilities have resumed in eastern DR Congo between the Congolese army and the M23 rebels, only five days after a truce was reached at the Luanda summit on November 23.
What were the terms of the truce?
The summit had resolved on a ceasefire beginning on Friday, which would be followed by the rebels’ withdrawal from the North Kivu province they had long occupied. Though the M23 rebels remained opposed to the militias – including on Tuesday in a village in the Bambo region, about 70 km north of the provincial capital Goma, where many civilians were reportedly killed – no withdrawal was visible. However, fighting between the army and the M23 had stopped since Saturday morning, only to resume on Thursday.
What caused the resumption of hostilities?
According to security sources who spoke on the condition of anonymity, fighting resumed as the M23 rebels violated the ceasefire and continued to loot and fight. “The fighting is violent, we are using heavy artillery” against the M23, a Congolese army officer told AFP, anonymously. When contacted by AFP, the military spokesman of the M23, Willy Ngoma, confirmed the fights with the FARDC.