Democratic Republic of Congo: M23 rebels push on after repelling counter-attack by government forces
Rebels advanced in eastern Congo on Friday after repelling a counter-attack by government forces, trying to strengthen their grip before a summit on defusing the crisis in a region long plagued by ethnic and political conflict.
Fighters from the M23 group, who are widely thought to be backed by neighbouring Rwanda, pushed south along Lake Kivu near the new rebel stronghold of Goma on the Rwandan border.
In Kinshasa, capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo, protesters accused the rebels of abuses including the rape of pregnant women while the United Nations reported killings of civilians and kidnappings.
The rebels advanced as their political chief Jean-Marie Runiga was due to meet the president of Uganda on the eve of the Kampala summit of leaders from Africa’s Great Lakes region.