Escalating Tensions! DR Congo Accuses Rwanda Of Staging Airport Drone Attack In Goma

Escalating Tensions! DR Congo Accuses Rwanda Of Staging Airport Drone Attack In Goma

By Spy Uganda Correspondent

The Democratic Republic of the Congo has accused Rwanda of carrying out a drone attack that damaged a civilian aircraft at the airport in the strategic eastern city of Goma, the capital of North Kivu province.

Fighting has flared in recent days around the town of Sake, 20 kilometers (12 miles) from Goma, between M23 rebels — which Kinshasa says is backed by Kigali — and Congolese government forces.

The drones “targeted aircraft of DRC Armed Forces”, in the early hours, said Lieutenant-Colonel Guillaume Ndjike, army spokesman for restive North Kivu province.

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“FARDC aircraft were not hit”, he said, but “civilian aircraft were damaged”, in a video broadcast by the governorate.

Security and government sources had told media source of the bombing but had no details about where it came from or any damage caused.

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A security source spoke of “two bombs” at the facility in Goma, the provincial Kivu capital and home to one million people.

“Two experts are on site to check where the bombs were fired from,” the source said.

A media correspondent and Goma residents reported hearing two loud explosions.

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Despite the bomb reports, national and international traffic was normal, sources at the airport said.

Several commercial, military and humanitarian flights took off or landed during the morning, according to Flight Radar website.


The UN Security Council voiced concern this week at “escalating violence” in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, condemning an offensive launched by the mainly Tutsi-led M23 rebels near Goma.

Dozens of soldiers and civilians have reportedly been killed or wounded in the fighting over the last 10 days.

The DRC, the UN and Western countries say Rwanda is supporting the rebels in a bid to control vast mineral resources, an allegation Kigali denies.

The rebels have conquered vast swathes of North Kivu in the last two years.

The latest fight has pushed tens of thousands of civilians to flee towards Goma, which stands between Lake Kivu and the Rwandan border and is practically cut off from the country’s interior.

According to a confidential UN document that circulated earlier this week, the Rwandan army is using sophisticated weapons such as surface-to-air missiles to support M23.

A “suspected Rwandan Defense Force (RDF) mobile surface-to-air missile (SAM)” was fired at a UN observation drone last Wednesday without hitting it, the report said.

UN forces have been in DRC for nearly 25 years, but stand accused of failing to protect civilians from armed groups.

The UN Security Council voted in December to accede to Kinshasa’s demand for a pullout despite the volatile situation.

With multiple diplomatic efforts failing to quell the violence in the Congo, African leaders meeting for a summit in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa discussed the DRC situation on the sidelines late Friday and were due to convene again on Saturday.

DRC President Felix Tshisekedi, who is in Addis was sworn in for a second five-year term in January after sweeping elections the opposition branded a sham.

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