The ceasefire which was decreed during an East African Community (EAC) mini-summit in the Angolan capital of Luanda and scheduled to go effective in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo from Friday Nov 25 seems to be holding.
The frontlines in North Kivu, where the DR Congo armed forces, FARDC and the M23 rebels have been locking horns, on Sunday Nov 27 had been quiet for forty-eight hours, an indication that the guns went silent on Friday as scheduled.
On Sunday, the two sides remained in their positions in the eastern DR Congo, according to inhabitants of the localities concerned.
The resurgence of the M23, which had earlier been defeated in 2013, has provoked a resumption of tension between the DR Congo and Rwanda, which Kinshasa accuses of supporting the rebels. Kigali has consistently denied the accusations and on its part accuses the Kinshasa authorities of collusion with the predominantly Rwandan Hutu FDLR rebels implanted in the DR Congo since the 1994 genocide against the Tutsis in Rwanda.
The Luanda mini-summit had decided on a cessation of hostilities effective last Friday evening, followed by the withdrawal of M23 “from zones occupied” and their “return to their initial positions”.
If the rebels refused to obey the injunction, the East African Community regional force being deployed in Goma said it would “use force to push them to submission”.
No withdrawal movement by the M23 rebels was observed as at yesterday evening although they remained in the positions they occupied after their advance.
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