Briefing Document / Aug. 22, 2012

FAQ: current situation in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo August 2012

Read our FAQ on the current situation in eastern DRC

A new rebellion against the Congolese government was launched in April 2012 in eastern DRC. The insurgent group is known as the M23 and is thought to comprise around 600 fighters, the core of whom formerly belonged to a rebel group called the Congrès National pour la Défense du Peuple (CNDP). The CNDP, after many years of insurgency in North and South Kivu, integrated into the Congolese army (FARDC) in a 23 March, 2009 peace agreement. Since it began in April, fighting between the Congolese army and the M23 rebels has displaced over 220,000 civilians in North Kivu province alone, according to the UNOCHA.  Reports from the Kivus suggest that attacks against civilians are increasing and ethnic tensions heightening in a region that has already suffered over fifteen years of violence and instability.