Page last updated at 07:51 GMT, Friday, 27 February 2009

In pictures: Rwanda leaves DR Congo

Rwandan soldiers parade ahead of Congolese soldiers in Goma, eastern DR Congo, on 25 February 2009

Thousands of Rwandan troops are leaving the Democratic Republic of Congo, five weeks after they crossed the border to attack Hutu rebels, who are behind years of conflict in the region.

Congolese attack helicopters fly over a ceremony in Goma, eastern DR Congo, on 25 February 2009

Rwanda has twice invaded its larger neighbour and attacked the FDLR militia, but this time the two countries took joint action against the rebel group whose leaders have been linked to the 1994 genocide.

Crowds watch ceremony in Goma

Hundreds of people turned out to watch a joint military parade by the two armies in eastern DR Congo’s North Kivu province, where much of the conflict has been focused.

Rwandan soldiers in Goma, eastern DR Congo, on 25 February 2009

Officials say the Rwandan pull-out will be complete by the end of this week.

Rwandan women celebrate the return of their soldiers in Gisenyi at the Rwanda-Congo border on 25 February 2009

As Rwandan women welcomed the soldiers home, the foreign ministry in Kigali said the joint operation had "seriously weakened" the FDLR rebels. But a BBC correspondent says civilians paid a heavy price.

Rwandan women celebrate the return of their soldiers in Gisenyi at the Rwanda-Congo border on 25 February 2009

Despite Rwandans’ pride in their armed forces, UN peacekeepers warned that the FDLR had not been neutralised, raising fears of revenge attacks by the militia.

An orphanage in Bunia, north-eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, on 24 February 2009

Orphanages are already filled with the victims of on-and-off fighting between the FDLR, other militias and the Congolese army, which has forced more than one million people to flee since late 2006.



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