Burundi’s army warns M23 rebel group for undermining its operations in eastern DRC


The Burundian army has been obliged to take necessary measures following the M23 rebel group’s behavior of blocking the Burundian contingent of the regional East African force in North Kivu province, eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), a Burundian army official has warned.

“A convoy of the Burundian contingent of the regional East African force was blocked twice by M23 elements,” said Burundian army spokesman Colonel Floribert Biyereke in a press release Thursday.

According to him, on Oct. 21, a convoy of the Burundian contingent of the regional EAC force that was taking food supplies to Kitchanga and Mweso localities was blocked by the M23 elements. The same incident happened on Oct. 30, when a convoy of the same contingent was heading to the same positions, said Biyereke.

“This situation cannot continue like that. The Burundian contingent deployed in the framework of the regional EAC force is obliged to take necessary measures,” Biyereke warned.

The Burundian army’s warning came after the M23 said earlier this week on social media that “it had killed and captured Burundian soldiers combating on the side of Congolese soldiers” in North Kivu province.

Earlier in September, EAC leaders, in a summit in Nairobi, Kenya, extended the mandate of the regional force in the DRC, which was set to expire originally on Sept. 8, by an additional three months to Dec. 8.

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