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M23 Rebels Forge Alliance With Mai Mai Militias

M23 rebels who are currently fighting the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) government forces say that they are making more gains despite attacks by the United Nations forces after forging an alliance with the Mai Mai.
M23 rebels who are currently fighting the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) government forces say that they are making more gains despite attacks by the United Nations forces after forging an alliance with the Mai Mai.

 

The M23 rebels also Known as the Congolese Revolutionary Army say that they were on Saturday attacked by United Nations helicopters as they tried to repulse an attack by the government forces on their bases.

 

The rebels say that they have now managed to capture the town of Kibumba 30 kilometres from the North Kivu Provincial City of Goma but say that they were not planning to go ahead and capture the city.

 

The rebels also say that they have forged an alliance with the Mai Mai forces who have also been engaging the Congolese government in areas near Ishasha, a border post with Uganda in Kanungu district forcing thousands of civilians to flee into Uganda.

 

M23 spokesperson Col. Vianney Kazarama told Uganda Radio Network (URN) on phone from Bunagana that they are determined to repulse any attack from the government forces.

 

He further says that the rebels are disappointed with United Nations forces who he claims are carrying out covert business in the mineral rich country under the pretext of protecting the civilians.

 

Kazarama says that M23 rebels will not launch reprisal attacks against United Nations forces. He, however, adds that M23 will continue to defend themselves from any attack.

 

The M23 rebels have been gaining more territory from the Congolese government since April 2012 when they overran the border town of Bunagana at the Uganda -Congo border.

 

Fresh fighting between the rebels and Congolese soldiers erupted Thursday, with both sides blaming each other for starting the violence.

 

An assistant to Bishop Jeanmarie Runiga, the M23 president identified as Fred Genzi, told our reporter on phone from their base in Bunagana that they are still waiting for the Congolese government in Kinshasa to pronounce itself on the matter of peace talks.

 

He says that the attacks on their bases will not divert them from their commitment to peace talks with the Congolese government.

 

The M23 rebels took arms against the Congolese government following the government’s failure to honour the agreement they signed with the government.

 

Our reporter could not independently verify the M23 rebel claims of gaining more territory from the government forces.

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