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The BBC's Stephen Gibbs reports
"Senior officers from all the armies involved have amassed great fortunes"
 real 28k

The BBC's Helen Vesperini, in Goma
"The partial pullback should have been completed by midnight"
 real 28k

The BBC's Laurent N'Dayu Huramy
believes the number of UN troops does not match the size of the task facing them"
 real 28k

Sunday, 15 April, 2001, 04:13 GMT 05:13 UK
Congo ceasefire 'broken'
UN troops arrive in Goma to the applause of local people
The first UN troops arrived last month
By Mark Dummett in Goma

United Nations military observers in the Democratic Republic of Congo say they have found evidence of ceasefire violations by government soldiers and are following up allegations of the rape and murder of a number of civilians.

They were acting on threats by the rebels in Congo that the deployment of 120 UN troops to the key town of Kisangani on Sunday would be blocked because of these violations.

The Kinshasa government and Rwandan and Ugandan-backed rebels pulled their troops back from frontline positions in March and allowed the UN in as part of a wider peace process.


General Mountaga Diallo Diallo, force commander of the UN peacekeeping force in Congo, said that observers had verified claims by the Rwandan-backed RCD rebel group that government troops had violated a ceasefire by advancing on villages and carrying out reprisals. The troops had burned one and looted another.

The UN force is also looking into claims that women have been raped and that four people have been killed.

The RCD says these and other as-yet-unverified violations are evidence that the peace process is faltering and that the planned deployment of UN peacekeepers to Congo's first city, Kisangani, on Sunday, should not go ahead.

General Diallo said the verification process agreed by all sides to the conflict would continue as normal.

Speaking after meeting the RCD leadership in Goma, he said he did not understand why the two issues were being connected in this way, and said the deployment to Kisangani, the most important town held by the rebels, would go ahead.

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See also:

23 Feb 01 | Africa
Congo pull-back plan welcomed
16 Jan 01 | Africa
DR Congo's troubled history
26 Jan 01 | Country profiles
Country profile: Democratic Republic of Congo
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