GOMA - The commander of the joint Rwanda –DRC military operations in the Eastern DRC, Lt Gen John Numbi, has said that Rwanda-DRC joint military operations have taken over more territories that were formerly controlled by FDLR.
In a press release done at Goma and signed by the General Tuesday, Numbi noted that the joint operation has taken over territories of Katoyi, Kibua, Kirambo, Gitoyi, Rubugu, and Panamo all in Rutshuru region.
“We have also clashed with FDLR in Kinigi and Mihama in Masisi region and taken over both territories” Numbi said.
He added that MONUC accepted and has started supporting the joint Rwanda-DRC military operation by providing logistics to the forces as well as preparing and implementing the integration process where hundreds of the surrendering Mai-Mai, CNDP and other armed groups officially began to be integrated into the Congolese national army (FARDC) since yesterday at Rumangabo and Kimoka divisions.
He said that the joint operation which started in Masisi, Kinigi and Mihama early this week left 9 FDLR soldiers dead, and seized several weapons.
He said that in Rutshuru, 180 Mai-Mai fighters surrendered with 46 AKA47 guns and will be integrated into the FARDC as soon as possible.
Tambo noted that in Masisi and Rutshuru, residents were willingly separating themselves from the FDLR and were cooperating in reporting and providing information to the joint forces on the FDLR’ s whereabouts.
The on-going Rwanda-DRC military operation to forcefully disarm and repatriate the FDLR came about after several high-level bilateral meetings last year.
The FDLR have for the last 15 years been operating in the DRC from where they committed violence against Congolese civilians and also continue to hatch their plans of destabilizing Rwanda.
The operation was endorsed December 5, last year, after a two-day meeting between both countries’ Foreign Affairs Ministers in Goma and later followed by an almost similar meeting by their Defense counterparts in Gisenyi to finalize and commence the implementation.