Two provinces in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo were in a “state of siege” on Thursday, on the orders of President Felix Tshisekedi.

This means the military controls the administration and the police in the provinces of Ituri and North Kivu until further notice, with the right to arrest and prosecute civilians.

The president justified the move citing increasing violence and displacement in the two provinces.

Security forces used tear gas against protesters protesting against the military presence in the city of Goma.

More than 100 rebel groups are active in Congo’s east, many of them fighting over the country’s precious natural resources.

In Ituri province alone, 1.6 million people have been displaced by the violence, according to the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

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