October 31, 2008

Truce Remains in Place in Congo

The rebel forces of Gen. Laurent Nkunda sat outside Goma as a cease-fire remained in place Friday in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

His troops were camped about 10 miles from the city, the capital of East Kivu province, while government soldiers remained in Goma, The Daily Telegraph reported. While the fighting has been halted at least temporarily, toll of dead and displaced is high.

The presidents of the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda, Joseph Kabila and Paul Kagame, have agreed to a meeting on the emergency, Louis Michel of the European Union said.

Inside Goma, the army was blamed for a string of rapes and killings. One of the victims was a restaurant owner, allegedly killed Wednesday night because he was too slow to serve drunken soldiers.

The town is crowded with refugees in addition to the troops and its normal population.