UN chief pushes for regional deal to end Congo crisis

December 19, 2012 21:56

UNITED NATIONS - UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed alarm on Wednesday at the crisis in the east of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and said he had discussed a plan to bring stability to the region with leaders of Rwanda, Uganda and other African states.

Congolese troops, aided by UN peacekeepers have been battling so-called M23 rebels - who UN experts and Congolese officials say are backed by neighboring Rwanda and Uganda - for the past eight months in the mineral-rich east of the country.

Last month the UN force in Congo, known as MONUSCO, suffered a severe blow to its image after it chose not to intervene as well-equipped M23 rebels seized control of the eastern city of Goma. The rebels withdrew after 11 days.

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