UN, DR Congo forces fighting armed groups in South Kivu province

KINSHASA, (PNA/Xinhua) — The UN Mission for Stabilization of Congo (MONUSCO) and the DR Congo Armed Forces (FARDC) have been fighting armed groups in South Kivu province since Oct. 18, a UN source said in a statement.

“The joint operation dubbed Kamilisha Usalama (Reinforce Peace) was launched to neutralize armed groups and protect the civilian population in this part of eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo),” the statement said Thursday.

“A stable and secure climate was observed last week in South Kivu after the UN troops carried out their eight unilateral operations in different parts of the province,” the UN noted further.

The statement said a Rwandan rebel with six members of his family surrendered at a MONUSCO camp for disarmament and repatriation.

The UN force launched the operations not only to fill the security gap left after the redeployment of FARDC units in neighboring North Kivu province, but to protect the civilian population.

Both South Kivu and North Kivu provinces in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) are restive with attacks frequently reported from rebels including those from Rwanda linked to the 1994 massacre.