The Congolese army accuses Rwanda of bombing Goma airport

A future open war between the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda is getting closer. President Paul Kagame’s (Rwanda) ongoing aggression against the people of North Kivu province (Democratic Republic of Congo) is beginning to take effect An untenable situation from a humanitarian perspective. The advance of the rebel group known as M23 has been halted on the outskirts of the city in recent days the city of Sakewhere they face the army and local self-defense groups, but bomb attacks on the city of Goma, the regional capital, have also been increasing for weeks.

The latest attack occurred in the early hours of this Saturday when a commercial drone armed with two 81mm mortar bombs dropped its cargo at Goma airport. Several civilian pieces of equipment were damaged and the security of the army’s Su-25 was compromised Congolese who were parked at the time. After several hours of uncertainty, Lt. Col. Guillaume Ndjike, army spokesman in North Kivu, announced to local media that the drone belonged to the Rwandan army and blamed it directly for staging the attack. Although Congolese President Félix Tshisekedi has not yet commented on this latest event, relations between the two nations are currently deteriorating.

In recent days, it has been confirmed that Rwandan and Ugandan soldiers crossed the Congolese border to approach remote border towns, allegedly with the intention of facilitating the smuggling of raw materials or making contact with the M23. Constant complaints about this violation of Congolese sovereignty fall on deaf ears in the international community. This is worth highlighting Goma is now surrounded by the M23 and is conveniently close to the siege zone. The only way to escape the city at the moment is to get to neighboring Rwanda (unthinkable since it is the enemy) or to pay a plane ticket to Kinshasa for an amount of more than 600 euros. There are millions of people trapped, waiting for a fate that they ignore almost as much as the world ignores them.

Likewise, this Friday, Congolese soldiers captured two Rwandan soldiers fighting alongside the M23 in the Democratic Republic of Congo; This is only the umpteenth proof that the Rwandan army is fighting alongside the rebels, arming them and training them. The growing outrage that the Congolese feel at these attacks is strangely directed more at the Western powers they see as necessary allies of Rwanda (the United States, France, the United Kingdom and the United Nations) than at Rwanda itself In Kinshasa there were violent protests in front of Western embassies last week. Those protesting believe that Rwanda is acting with the support of the West and are demanding that the aid received by the neighboring country, particularly the US, be stopped. A Congolese proverb is repeated over and over again: “Half of Rwanda’s wealth comes from the Congo and the other half from the United States.” It refers to the plunder of the Democratic Republic of Congo by Rwandans through the smuggling of raw materials as well as the aid which Rwanda has received from the Americans since the 1994 genocide.

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The humanitarian situation resulting from the fighting is serious. According to the United Nations, 135,000 civilians have fled the city of Sake towards Goma since February 7 (Twenty kilometers separate the two places), and millions of people are also in danger as a result of the clashes. It is worth remembering that there are already settlements 2.5 million distributed in North Kivu province.

They are fleeing M23, just as they were months or years ago when the same group attacked their cities. One of the problems they face is that when the situation forces them to settle in the outskirts of Goma, in recent weeks the M23 has also intensified its bombing of the same neighborhoods and these are increasing ( but they are). After all, the number of civilians killed by rebel mortar shells is growing. Earlier this week, shelling also hit the Zaina refugee camp in Sake, where UNICEF reported that several civilians were killed.

CODECO kidnaps and murders 16 civilians

But the M23 is not the only armed group spreading the worst diseases in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. More than 120 armed groups are proliferating in an area similar to that of the Iberian Peninsula, where the CODECO cooperative, made up of militiamen of the Lendu ethnic group, continues its catastrophic violent attacks against members of the Hema ethnic group.

The latest of these attacks occurred this Friday. Dozens of Hema civilians were kidnapped by CODECO militiamen as they returned from a funeral and it was only thanks to the quick intervention of the army (along with the). Self-defense militias locals), which allowed around twenty people to escape their kidnapping and take advantage of the chaos of the fight. Ten members of CODECO were killed in the clash, and the revenge they demanded became clear on Saturday morning: all the kidnapped people who failed to escape, an estimated sixteen people, were murdered in cold blood that same Friday as payment for fallen comrades.

The Lendu’s aggression against the Hema, motivated by a series of problems related to the ownership of the land and the payment of taxes that the Hema must pay to the Lendu in order to live on it, is becoming apparent huge areas of the Democratic Republic of Congo with little government control and where the law of the jungle prevails. Not even the presence of the United Nations, which is hardly involved in the conflicts described despite the presence of more than 13,000 peacekeepers in the country, is helping to stop a spiral of violence that began in the region decades ago and is still not there has views. to an end.

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