Nord-Kivu: M23 Rebels Reoccupy Mushaki Following Clashes with Local Militias

In Nord-Kivu region, the M23 rebel group has successfully ousted local militias from the center of Mushaki. This development, occurring on Wednesday, January 17th, comes in the wake of the rebel group’s entry into the town.

The seizure of Mushaki by the M23 rebels was preceded by fierce fighting centered in the Karuba area within the Masisi territory of Nord-Kivu, as reported by various local sources. The conflict has notably heightened tensions and increased volatility in the region, particularly within the Karuba and Mushaki villages.

Furthermore, the civil society in Masisi has reported that the M23 rebels are seemingly consolidating their positions within this area, specifically along the Mushaki-Kitshanga axis. This activity follows recent drone strikes by the FARDC (Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo) on M23 positions in Kitshanga, which reportedly resulted in significant casualties among the M23 ranks, including two senior soldiers.

Amidst these developments, the M23 spokesperson has indicated that the group plans to retaliate. In contrast, FARDC officials have stated that the SADC (Southern African Development Community) forces have arrived in Congo. This deployment is part of an effort to forcefully remove the M23 group, which is allegedly supported by Rwanda, as noted in various reports by United Nations experts.