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Deadly Fighting Displaces Thousands in Eastern DRC as M23 Approaches Goma

HeadlineFeb 08, 2024

In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, tens of thousands of people continue to flee violence in the east of the country as M23 rebels advance toward Goma, the capital of North Kivu. M23, which is accused of having ties with Rwanda, reportedly surrounded the city of Sake, considered the last line of defense before reaching Goma. Many in eastern Congo have been forced to flee multiple times amid mounting violence from some 120 armed groups that operate in the region. This is an internally displaced person.

Elisabeth Rebecca: “There was a lot of gunfire at home. The M23 had arrived, burning the houses. They made us give them all the money. Some of us even lost our children. There were many dead and wounded. When they entered a house, they took everything, killed people and took away livestock. That’s what made us flee from our home to here in Sake. At the beginning of last week, we fled from Shonga to Kirotshe, and it was on Sunday that we left Kirotshe to come here.”

During a soccer match this week at the Africa Cup of Nations, the DRC’s national team sought to bring attention to the largely ignored humanitarian disaster back home. Players held one hand in front of their mouths while pointing two fingers to their temples during Congo’s national anthem.

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