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Sud-Kivu: FARDC regain control of Kilembwe town

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Josephine Lukoya

The armed forces of the DRC (FARDC) resumed control of the city of Kilembwe in the extreme south of the territory of Fizi (South Kivu), which was occupied by militiamen. The commander of the operational sector Sokola II of South Kivu, General Bwange Safari Gustave, told UN owned Radio Okapi, without making any assessment of the fighting.

General Bwange Safari Gustave stressed, however, that the road between Lulimba and Kilembwe, 80 km long, was not yet accessible to the traffic following a sweep operation carried out by regular troops, particularly in the village of Lwiko.

Lwiko and other villages such as Penemende, Makola, Mapanda, Kiungwe and Maindombe-villages straddling South Kivu and Maniema-had assaulted their base before attacking Kilembwe -centre the night from Monday to Tuesday.

This attack by surprise caused 6 deaths, including 5 militia and several wounded. Local sources said three soldiers had been taken prisoner.

The attack on Kilembwe was claimed by a coalition of the Yakutumba group, commanded by Mayi-Mayi Mulumba, Malayka and Sheikh Hassan. All these armed groups were repulsed by the regular forces.

According to General Bwange Safari, military operations are still ongoing in the region.

He traveled to Fizi this week to comfort the troops at the front in Lulimba. He accompanied the commander of the 3rd defense zone, General Kasereka.

He spoke to the civilian population in Fizi and Baraka, calling for peace and trust and collaboration with the army. To the FARDC soldiers, he asked not to bother the population and to remove the barriers on the main arteries of the operational zone.

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