Clashes erupted again between the army and M23 rebels in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, the restive region where fighting has been flaring all week, the two sides said.
“Early this morning they attacked,” said Lieutenant Colonel Olivier Hamuli, an army spokesman. “We’re in the middle of fighting at the moment.”
A spokesman for the rebels, Colonel Vianney Kazarama, confirmed that fighting broke out early in the morning, adding that the army “attacked us with helicopters and tanks.”
The clashes in the Nord Kivu region erupted hours after the United Nations put its peacekeepers in the region on high alert.
Violence flared this week after the UN and the United States imposed sanctions on the leader of the M23 rebel group, 38-year-old Sultani Makenga.