Page last updated at 03:02 GMT, Sunday, 25 January 2009

Nine dead in Congo rebel drive

Congolese soldier watches as Rwandan troops pass on road east of Goma
Congo let thousands of Rwandan soldiers in to help fight Hutu rebels

The Congolese military says nine Hutu rebels have been killed in eastern DR Congo, as a joint drive with Rwandan soldiers against rebels is stepped up.

A Congolese army commander reported fighting with Rwandan Hutu rebels in five villages in the Lubero area, over 200km (125 miles) north of Goma.

Meanwhile there is no word on the possible extradition to DR Congo of Tutsi rebel chief Laurent Nkunda.

He was was arrested in Rwanda on Thursday night.

Congolese soldiers are fighting alongside at least 3,500 Rwandan soldiers to disarm the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR).

Members of this ethnic Hutu militia fled Rwanda after the 1994 genocide against Tutsis and moderate Hutus. Some FDLR leaders are accused of involvement in the genocide.

General John Numbi, who is in charge of joint operations with Rwandan troops, reported fighting in five villages in Lubero on Friday and Saturday.

He said nine FDLR fighters had been killed and one Congolese soldier wounded.

Under pressure

The BBC's Thomas Fessy reports from Goma that people around there fear new fighting could lead to fresh flows of displaced people.

Gen Laurent Nkunda (archive image)
The exact details of Gen Nkunda's capture are still unclear

Our correspondent adds that other military operations are reported to be about to start west of Goma as well as in South Kivu, home to thousands of Hutu militiamen.

Laurent Nkunda, captured in Rwanda days ago, justified his rebellion because of the presence of Hutu militiamen.

Rwanda is under pressure to extradite him to Congo. However many analysts suspect it might hold onto the Tutsi rebel leader.

"We're still waiting for Rwanda to take the decision to extradite Nkunda," said Congolese government spokesman Lambert Mende.

It is not clear where Mr Nkunda is being held.

Print Sponsor

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

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific