BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific Somali Swahili French Great Lakes Hausa Portugeuse
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Africa  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS
Tuesday, 15 October, 2002, 15:57 GMT 16:57 UK
UN issues DR Congo warning
RCD rebels fleeing Uvira
The RCD lost control of Uvira over the weekend
The United Nations mission in DR Congo (Monuc) has expressed concern after the resumption of fighting in the east of the country.

"The current fighting has immense humanitarian consequences, it jeopardizes the peace process and may put at risk the progress made recently," Monuc said in a statement.

There were clashes on Monday when the airport closest to Bukavu was attacked, after the Mai-Mai militia said it would take the town from rebels backed by Rwanda.

The Congolese Rally for Democracy (RCD) had lost control of Uvira to the Mai-Mai over the weekend.

The Mai-Mai have been allied to the Kinshasa government and their advance follows the withdrawal of tens of thousands of Rwandan and Ugandan troops in recent weeks, after being in the coutnry backing a rebellion for the past four years.

Some 5,000 people have fled Uvira for Burundi following the weekend's fighting, adding to the 2,000 refugees already there, says the UN refugee agency. Troops deployed

A spokesman for Monuc in Kinshasa, Hamadoun Toure, said that fighting had also been reported in other areas.

The town of Mambasa has been attacked by troops belonging to the Movement for the Liberation of Congo (MLC) and RCD-National, he said.

Refugees
Refugees fleeing Uvira towards Burundi

He said more fighting had been reported near the rebel-held town of Bunia in the north-east.

Late on Monday, the French news agency, AFP, reported that Bukavu was still in RCD hands after three hours of fighting near the airport at Kavumu, 20 km from Bukavu.

Burundi has deployed around 100 troops to its border with DR Congo following the fighting, reports the French news agency, AFP.

Ceasefire

The RCD has suspended negotiations with the government and accused Kinshasa of breaking a ceasefire.

But the government denies this and has called for an end to the fighting.

Rwandan troops leave DR Congo
Crowds in Bukavu watch the Rwandans go earlier this month

"The government calls on the Mai-Mai and RCD to stop fighting immediately and give peace a chance," said government spokesman Kikaya bin Karubi.

As well as negotiating the withdrawal of foreign forces, the DR Congo Government has been talking to rebel and opposition groups, with a view to holding the country's first ever democratic elections.

The MLC has reached a separate agreement with the authorities in Kinshasa.


Key stories

Background

TALKING POINT
See also:

03 Oct 02 | Africa
24 Sep 02 | Africa
23 Sep 02 | Africa
19 Sep 02 | Africa
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Africa stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Africa stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes