Democratic Republic of Congo on Genocide Watch list of conflicts to monitor
by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) – The Democratic Republic of Congo has been placed on a List of 10 Conflicts to Watch in 2023 prepared by the US-based Genocide Watch NGO.
Already crushed by centuries of commercial and colonial exploitation, recent decades of civil wars, political instability, corruption, and a devastating lack of infrastructure, the central African country is facing new violence and upheaval through the activities of the March 23 Movement (M23) rebel group.
“M23 is wreaking havoc in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo,” GW said in its report. “The Congolese government had been trying to reassert its authority in the troubled east, home to dozens of rebel groups, including some from neighboring countries.”
“M23 holds several towns and surrounds the provincial capital of Goma. In 2013, the group was beaten back by a ramped-up United Nations force but now appears well-armed and organized,” GW continued. “Fighting has driven tens of thousands of people from their homes and could spiral into a wider regional proxy war.”
The UN has reported that the M23 is apparently backed by Rwanda, a situation which would give rise to worrying tension between the Congolese and Rwandan governments – and to increased violence and potential voting disruption in the DRC’s national elections in December. “An added complication is Congo’s general election in 2023,” GW notes. “The vote could mark for the country another step away from its disastrous civil wars two decades ago. But suspended registration or voting in the east due to violence would cast a shadow over the results.”
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