DR Congo

DR Congo: North Kivu - Tension is high, looting in Goma investigated

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Tensions in North Kivu remain high as fighting continued in the area of Kibati, outside Goma. Local sources said that the CNDP rebels led by former gen. Laurent Nkunda were engaged in fighting until the early hours pf the morning, spreading panic amid the civilian population, the principal victim, which has endured violence on a practically daily basis since last August 28th. Meanwhile, the region's governor Julien Paluku said that the regular army soldiers that went on a rampage looting shops and homes on Monday and Tuesday in several areas north of Goma "will be subjected to an in-depth investigation and sanctioned in accordance with the law". Notably, the authorities said that the thefts, looting, break-ins and associated violence were concentrated in the city of Kanyabayonga driving many families of residents and refugees away from their homes. On the diplomatic front, the discussions at the UN Security Council are continuing, though there is still no mention of strengthening the UN mission in RD Congo (MONUC) to confront with the exacerbation of violence. The head of MONUC operations, Alain Le Roy, believes that UN sec. gen. Ban Ki-moon "will present a report next week which may enable the Council to express itself on the issue toward the end of November.