Tuesday 6 November 2012

DR Congo says shootout with Rwanda caused by soldier ``stroling `` for food

The recent shootout between the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) and Rwanda was caused by a soldier "strolling" for food, the military of the Central African country says in a bid to cool down tensions between the two neighbors. The spokesman for the Congolese military in North Kivu province, colonel Olivier Hamuli, on Monday linked the Nov. 3 clash to a "strolling" soldier in search for food into Rwanda.
The incident, which cost the life of one Congolese soldier, took place at the Kanyanja section along the border between DR Congo and Rwanda.
Hamuli ruled out any desire by the Congolese Armed Forces (FARDC) to provoke their Rwandan counterparts, saying the soldier in question had crossed into the Rwandan territory to look for food.
"The shootout between the Congolese and the Rwandan soldiers was not sanctioned by the commanders of the two armies," colonel Hamuli said.
Elsewhere the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo) is urging the United Nations to sanction those responsible for the massacre four years ago in the eastern province of North Kivu.
North Kivu Governor Julien Paluku made the call on Monday to mark the fourth anniversary of the massacre, in which 150 people were killed in the village of Kiwanja, 80 km north of the provincial capital Goma.
According to Paluku, the ethnic-based massacre was carried out by rebels of the National Council for the Defense of the People (CNDP) then led by Laurent Nkunda and supported by Bosco Ntaganda, who is being sought by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for crimes against humanity.
The governor deplored the current occupation of the same village by ex-CNDP members now in a M23 movement formed in April. The governor appealed to the United Nations to go beyond the "phase of observation to the phase of sanctions."
"These criminals continue to carry out targeted assassinations which have led to the massive displacement of the population to more secure regions," Paluku said.
"Some of the perpetrators of those massacres are currently holding senior positions in M23," Paluku said, adding that their names were published on a list handed over to the United Nations.
He said those identified include M23 leader Bosco Ntaganda and Sultan Makenga, the military commander for the rebellion. (Xinhua)

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