Congo - east

Since 1996; conflict has centered around control of mineral resources in weakly-controlled eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, exacerbated by the FDLR rebel group mostly comprised of former soldiers of the Interahamwe in Rwanda. See summary

Recent articles: Militiamen kill 25 civilians in ethnic attack in DR Congo 02/19 25 civilians killed in DR Congo ethnic attack 02/18 My Necktie Tricks With M23 Rebels and Why Kabila Should Leave Power 02/18 Four more M23 rebels arrested in Kisoro 02/17 Budget Minister Casts Doubt on 2017 Elections 02/17 My necktie tricks with M23 rebels and why Kabila should leave power 02/17 The De Facto Embargo is Over: Record-High Conflict-Free Minerals Exports from Eastern Congo 02/16 East Africa: Uganda Moves to Expel Burundian Refugees 02/16 African States wary of potential repeal of 'conflict minerals' rule 02/15 The healing powers of football in the DRC 02/14 Who pays the hidden price for Congo’s conflict-free minerals? 02/13 Congolese music festival for peace draws tens of thousands 02/12 DR Congo war crimes trial resumes for ex-warlord Katanga 02/10 Africa: African Press Review 10 February 2017 02/10 Africa: DR Congo, Tanzania, Zambia and Burundi to Meet On Lake Tanganyika Oil 02/09 750 M23 ex-combatants unaccounted for 02/09 Basketball - U-16 Girls' Team to Play Friendlies in Europe 02/08 DRC: Fighting measles in South Kivu 02/08 Congo opposition demands new govt before repatriating leader's body 02/08 Former child soldiers start boxing school for Congo's youth 02/07 Fate of Former M23 Rebel Fighters Remains Unclear 02/07 Burundi: Presumed Rebels? 02/06 Fate of former M23 rebel fighters remains unclear 02/06 Its Time for Amani Festival in Goma 02/06 Women’s Participation in Political and Peace Processes in the Great Lakes Region 02/06 Participation des femmes aux processus politiques et de paix dans la région des Grands Lacs 02/06 Rubavu-Based Uwamariya Makes Wine From Beetroot 02/03 Congo rebel revival endangers elections - ambassador to U.N. 02/03 M23 leader escapes from UPDF base 02/03 Congo-Kinshasa: Congolese M23 Rebels Flee to Rwanda 02/01 Two Russian pilots, officer killed in helicopter crash in DR Congo 01/31 UPDATE 1-Congo says M23 fighters captured downed air crew 01/31 Two Russian pilots, Congolese officer die in helicopter crashes 01/31 Congolese M23 rebels flee to Rwanda 01/30 Congolese M23 fighters 'seek refuge in Rwanda' 01/30 Sunday Deadline Looms for Deal on New DRC Government 01/27 Uganda Rebel Returns Add to Growing Headache for Kabila and Congo 01/27 Human Rights Watch Researcher Deported 01/24 Congo expels Human Rights Watch researcher a second time 01/23 Africa: African Press Review 23 January 2017 01/23 Fear of return of M23 rebels now fuels tensions in eastern DRC 01/21 Fear of Rebels' Return Fuels Tensions 01/21 M23 men back at Bihanga barracks, army say 01/21 UPDATE 1-Uganda detains more than 100 former M23 rebels sneaking to Congo 01/19 Uganda Detains Scores of Ex-rebels Headed for DRC 01/19 Fleeing M23 rebels caught at Congo border, detained 01/19 Uganda admits scores of Congolese rebels escaped base 01/19 Exploring resilient Rwanda through a different lens 01/19 Uganda finally admits scores of M23 rebels escaped base 01/19 Uganda detains more than 100 former M23 rebels traveling to Congo 01/19 UN 'ready to engage' if Congo rebels invade 01/19 Uganda confirms hundreds of Congolese M23 rebels missing 01/19 Mani Martin to Sing for Peace at Amani Festival 01/18 Uganda says former M23 Congolese rebels not welcome 01/17 Uganda minister says Congo's former M23 rebels not welcome in Uganda 01/17 DRC: The Alarming Consequences of Falsified Medicines 01/17 DRC: The alarming consequences of poor quality medicines 01/17 The United Nations commits to support the Great Lakes region in finding durable solutions to the issue of South Sudanese disarmed elements present in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) 01/16 Congo govt says M23 rebel fighters cross over border from Uganda 01/16 Seven illegal guns impounded in Kisoro 01/16 Uganda military denies Congolese rebels left camp 01/16 UN to support Great Lakes region on S. Sudan rebels 01/16 Congo warns of armed ex-M23 rebels crossing border 01/15 UPDATE 1-Congo govt says M23 rebel fighters cross over border from Uganda 01/15 Congolese M23 rebels cross over from Uganda, take village 01/15 Uganda scoffs at DR Congo over M23 rebels 01/15 Uganda again arrests traditional leader over clashes last year 01/14 For Congo's Pygmies, expulsion and forest clearance end a way of life 01/12 Child Victim or Brutal Warlord? Uganda's War Crimes Trial 01/12 Vital eastern supply route cut off in DR Congo 01/05 ​A timeline of DRC’s chase for democracy 01/05 Congo opposition leader who fled country announces candidacy 01/03 End in sight for Congo’s political crisis as two sides of divide agree terms for President Joseph Kabila’s exit 01/01 Deal reached to end DR Congo political crisis 12/31 Congo president to leave after 2017 vote under new deal 12/31 Can DR Congo avert a transition crisis? 12/31 DRC President Joseph Kabila: reformer or corrupt authoritarian 12/29 Africa: Here Is to a Borderless Africa in 2017 and Beyond! 12/29 Here is to a borderless Africa in 2017 and beyond! 12/28 Africa: The Grinch's Not-So-Festive Guide to Food Ration Cuts 12/28 DR Congo Christmas slaughter leaves 35 dead 12/27 DR Congo troops kill 10 soldiers from Burundi who crossed border in hunt for rebels 12/27 Democratic Republic of Congo - Deadly attacks in North Kivu (24-25.12.16) 12/27 ‘DR Congo troops killed 10 Burundian soldiers’ 12/26 Twenty-two civilians killed in attacks at Democratic Republic of Congo 12/26 13 civilians killed in DR Congo Christmas Day ethnic attack 12/26 DR Congo Christmas slaughter leaves 35 dead 12/26 DR Congo Christmas slaughter leaves 35 dead 12/26 At Least 22 Killed in Troubled North Kivu Province 12/26 22 civilians killed in DR Congo massacre: official 12/25 Rebel attacks in eastern DRC 'kill at least 22' 12/25 Congo Ethnic Militia Kills 13 Civilians in Apparent Revenge Attack 12/25 Dozens killed in attacks amid political unrest in DR Congo 12/25 Congo mediators say no deal before Christmas, talks on hold 12/24 20 reported dead in eastern Congo as militia fighters blamed 12/23 President Jacob Zuma Saddened By Passing of SANDF Soldier in the DRC 12/23 At Least 26 Killed in Congo Protests, Rights Group Says 12/21 Monusco Expresses Grave Concern Over the Rect Wave of Ongoing Arrests and Dettions 12/21 Congolese President Stays in Office After Term's End, Amid High Political Tension 12/21 Statement attributable to the Spokesman of the Secretary-General on the Democratic Republic of the Congo 12/20


After the Interahamwe in 1994, Hutu militia groups moved across the border from Rwanda into Kivu province of what was then Zaire. Zaire's ruler, the kleptomaniac strongman Mobutu Sese Seko, failed to prevent the militias from attacking across the border into Rwanda. Local rebel leader Laurent Kabila, backed by Rwandan troops and equipment, swept out of southeastern Zaire in 1997 and seized the country from Mobutu.

The newly renamed Democratic Republic of the Congo was not easy to govern. The Second Congo War erupted in 1998, involving troops from Rwanda, Uganda, Angola, Namibia and Zimbabwe. The vast mineral resources of the east of the country helped to fuel the conflict. In 2001 Laurent Kabila died, and his son Joseph Kabila took power. The war officially ended in 2002, and foreign troops left.

However, fighting continued among government factions and remaining militias. In 2004, Laurent Nkunda began another rebellion, claiming that the Tutsis of the region were being forsaken by the government soldiers. His rebel group was supported by Rwanda. This continued off and until 2008, when his army began a major offensive. International pressure on Rwanda grew, and Rwanda arrested Nkunda in early 2009.

Currently, the Hutu militias still operate in the area, although with greatly reduced numbers. Government soldiers are also frequently accused of crimes against civilians.