SAMIRDC: High-Level Military Meeting in Goma Amidst Tensions

On March 1st 2024,  an important meeting took place in Goma, in the North Kivu province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), amidst heightened tensions due to recent hostilities.

Colonel Guillaume Ndjike, spokesperson for the Armed Forces of the DRC in North Kivu, reported an aggressive act by M23 rebels and the Rwandan Army, which dropped ten bombs in Sake. Despite this, the visit by top military officials from South Africa, the DRC, Tanzania, Malawi, and Burundi proceeded as planned. Their presence in the region was part of a preparatory assessment for a major upcoming offensive aimed at restoring peace in the conflict-ridden eastern part of the DRC.

Since their arrival in Goma last Thursday, the military chiefs from the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and Burundi, engaged in critical discussions. A meeting held on Saturday concluded their visit to Goma, following an inspection tour of Sake and the central coordination center for operations.

The gathering in Goma was highlighted by Major General Sylvain Ekenge, spokesperson for the FARDC, as a “strong signal” of the commitment by SADC and Burundi to support the DRC’s efforts in bringing peace back to its eastern territories.