- The deployment of South Sudan and Uganda contingents is expected in due course with South Sudan deploying alongside the Kenyan Contingent in Rumangabo
- The Ugandan contingent is to deploy in Bunagana, Rutshuru/Kiwanja and Mabenga.
Kenya Defence Forces in DRC airlifted Burundi troops to Goma for deployment in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as part of the East African Community Regional Force (EACRF).
KDF said it provided Strategic Airlift and Logistics Support to the contingent from Burundi to Goma International Airport for onward deployment on Sunday, March 5.
Burundi lacks logistics for such missions.
The Burundi National Defence Forces (BNDF) troops were received by the EACRF Deputy Commander Brig Gen Emmanuel Kaputa in the company of Senior Staff Officers from the East Africa Community (EAC) Partner States at the Force Headquarters and the Kenyan Contingent Commander Col Daniel Rotich.
The incoming BNDF troops are to deploy in Sake, Kilolirwe and Kitchanga in North Kivu as approved by the Heads of State mini-summit held in Addis Ababa on February 17, 2023, upon the recommendations of the EAC CDF/CDS of re-posturing troops within Rutshuru and Masisi territories.
Burundi is deploying its troops to the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) as part of EACRF.
Further, the deployment of South Sudan and Uganda contingents is expected in due course with South Sudan deploying alongside the Kenyan Contingent in Rumangabo while the Ugandan Contingent is to deploy in Bunagana, Rutshuru/Kiwanja and Mabenga.
Kenyan troops are to further deploy in Tongo and Kishishe, KDF said.
The regional force is accelerating the full deployment of EACRF troops to enhance the peace and stability efforts in Eastern DRC.
President William Ruto ordered the deployment of 903 soldiers from KDF to join a regional peacekeeping mission-the EACRF.
A mostly Congolese Tutsi group, the M23 (the March 23 Movement) leapt to prominence in 2012 when it briefly captured Goma before being driven out.
After lying dormant for years, the rebels took up arms again in late 2021, claiming the DRC had failed to honour a pledge to integrate them into the army, among other grievances.
The resurgence has ratcheted up diplomatic tensions, with the DRC accusing its smaller neighbour Rwanda of backing the group.
Rwanda denies providing any support for the M23 and accuses the Congolese army of colluding with the Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) — a notorious Hutu rebel movement involved in the 1994 genocide of Tutsis in Rwanda.
Retired President Uhuru Kenyatta is leading peace talks in the region.