“The convoy of the Burundian contingent of the Regional Force of the East African Community (EAC) which was transporting food supplies to KITCHANGA and MWESO was refused passage by the M23 which blocked the communication route leading to these two localities », denounced this Thursday the Burundian army in a press release. The events occurred on October 21. This is not an isolated event, especially since on the 30th of the same month the same event occurred again when a convoy of the same contingent which was heading towards the same positions was blocked en route by the same elements of the M23.
“The FDNB makes it known that this situation cannot continue. The Burundian contingent deployed as part of the East African Community Regional Force is obliged to take necessary measures,” writes Colonel Floribert Biyekere, Spokesperson for the FDNB.
The command of the Regional Force of the East African Community was contacted to resolve this question “but was unable to bring the M23 back to its senses”, once again deplored the Burundian army which clarified its mission: “to ensure the safety of the population and its property, the free movement of people and goods on the main roads in their sector of responsibility.
Furthermore, the DRC and Burundi have signed since the end of August a defense protocol was officially signed between the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Burundi. Concerning the M23, President Evariste Ndayishimiye said on the occasion that despite an appearance of cessation of hostilities, tensions persist. He pointed out the collection of taxes by the M23, a sign that the situation remains unstable.
“Even if there is some semblance of a cessation of hostilities, it is not real. The M23 continues to collect taxes. All this shows that there are still tensions. Our mission is to silence the guns. We have to get started. If the region is not very active,” declared the Burundian president.