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Bishop Venuste Mutiganda audivia2002 at yahoo.fr
Jeu 9 Oct 12:08:15 GMT 2008

Thursday, 9th October 2008

    Congo rebels capture major military base

loyal to Congolese Gen. Laurent Nkunda’s  Congrès National pour la
Défense du Peuple (CNDP) Wednesday morning overran the important
military camp of Rumangabo causing heavy damage in both men and
material. Reports reaching The New Times
from the eastern Congolese town of Goma speak of panic spreading in the
town on reports that the region’s most important military barracks had
been captured by the rebels.    An estimated 100 government
troops allegedly died in the attack and tonnes of military hardware
have fallen into the rebels’ hands, including four Katyusha rocket
launchers, an assortment of anti aircraft guns, mortar launchers and
vehicles. Our source said that commanders of the government
soldiers (FARDC) locked up in an emergency meeting midmorning following
the major setback before taking the route towards Rumangabo barracks to
organise a counter attack. “All the commanders of the 8th
military region have left for Rumangabo, they are supposed to link up
with FDLR troops under the command of Lt. Col. Ndinzimihigo in Rutare,”
she continued to sound the alarm that if Rumangabo remains in the hands
of the CNDP rebels, the Rutchuru-Goma route would be cut off and
supplies would not pass through. Ndinzimihigo, whose real names are Marc Habimana, is the commander of one of FDLR’s battalions fighting alongside the FARDC. “We
are now stocking up on food because we do not know how long this
conflict will last,” said our source. Over 100,000 people are said to
have been displaced by the renewed fighting Attempts to get
spokesman of the UN peacekeeping forces (MONUC) as well as the rebel
side were futile. MONUC spokesman Michel Bonnardeaux’ phone directed
the caller to a voicemail message while the rebel’s new spokesman,
Bertrand Bisimwa, said he was in a meeting and would call later. Fresh
attempts to raise him again failed. But a very reliable source
revealed that the conflict took a new turn following the visit to Goma
by the DRC army chief, Gen. Dieudonée Kayembe.  It added that
Kayembe met with FDLR top commander, Maj. Gen Sylvestre Mudacumura,
late last month to chart out a joint operation against Nkunda. In
exchange, the DRC would not disarm FDLR as stipulated in the Nairobi
communiqué. Rwanda yesterday condemned the new alliance between
the DRC army and FDLR rebels who are said to be remnants of the Ex-FAR
and Interahamwe militia who spearheaded the 1994 Genocide of Tutsis.  Ends

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