Escalating Clashes Near Kibumba in North Kivu

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North Kivu

As fighting resumed in early October in the North Kivu region of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), it has moved closer to Goma, the provincial capital, in the last three days. The conflict pits the M23 rebels, reportedly supported by Rwanda according to Kinshasa and the United Nations, against pro-government armed groups allied with the Congolese army. Officially, a ceasefire is still in place in the area, although it appears that hardly anyone is adhering to it anymore.

“The ceasefire has been violated,” stated a release from the East African Community (EAC). Indeed, the clashes have intensified, involving the M23 rebels, pro-government armed groups, and Congolese soldiers, according to multiple sources, particularly in the vicinity of Kibumba, where the fighting has flared up over the past three days.

The army has yet to respond, maintaining in recent statements that they are honoring the existing ceasefire.

Military aircraft have been flying over Goma, the capital of North Kivu, in recent days. Multiple fronts are currently active, featuring various armed actors, both state and non-state.

The East African troops, deployed since November 2022 in an attempt to restore peace in eastern DRC, have not engaged in the fighting. However, they suffered a loss on Tuesday as a mortar round struck the EAC camp in Kibumba, located in the Nyiragongo territory, during the clashes.

Soukaina Sghir

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