Mixed sentiment for DRC intervention brigade

July 17, 2013 at 10:32 AM
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KINSHASA, Democratic Republic of Congo, July 17 (UPI) -- A U.N. brigade mandated to use force in the Democratic Republic of Congo may ensure security but also creates a rebel backlash, analysts say.

The U.N. authorized a special intervention brigade in the wake of a rebel takeover of parts of eastern DRC last year. The March 23 Movement took control over parts of the country as part of a rebel campaign that began in early 2012.

International aid groups this week expressed concern about renewed violence in the region. Pieter Vanholder, country director at advocacy Life and Peace Institute, told al-Jazeera the brigade "could become a push factor for some to join armed groups, adding to local resistance."

More than 3,000 peacekeeping troops are working under the authority of the U.N. mission in DRC. M23 rebels said they would defend themselves against action taken by the intervention brigade.

Remy Kasindi, director of DRC think tank CRESA, told al-Jazeera the brigade may help bolster the confidence of DRC civilians.

"A dynamic intervention brigade will experience popular support as most Congolese are tired of inert peacekeepers," he said.

The Uganda Daily Monitor reported Tuesday several displaced Congolese civilians were returning home as recent border violence subsides.

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