October 27, 2008

U.N. Group Asks Rebels to Leave DRC Base

Rebels in control of a seized military base in the Democratic Republic of Congo should relinquish control immediately, a United Nations group said Monday.

The United Nations Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo has asked that National Congress for the Defense of People rebels give back control of the eastern Congo base for a second time, the Voice of America reported.

The U.N. group's spokesman, Michel Bonnardeaux, said the rebel group led by renegade army Gen. Laurent Nkunda had taken control of the Rumangabo military camp nearly 10 days before Sunday's camp seizure.

The rebel group eventually released control of the camp due to U.N. pressures and now Bonnardeaux is hoping Nkunda's forces will once again relinquish control of the site to the military.

"Once again we've asked them to leave the premises and return it to the national army and the national army was also occupying another village called Tongo and they also withdrew from that village after U.N. pressure and it was later taken over by the CNDP rebels. So, pressure is ongoing," the U.N. official said.