UN to boost DRCongo forces by 3,000
The UN Security Council agreed to boost its forces in the Democratic Republic of Congo by some 3,000 troops.world Updated: Nov 20, 2008 22:56 IST
The UN Security Council on Thursday agreed to boost its forces in the Democratic Republic of Congo by some 3,000 troops.
In a unanimous resolution, the council agreed to boost the 17,000-strong mission known by the acronym MONUC by "up to 2,785 military personnel, and the strength of its formed police unit by up to 300 personnel."
The temporary reinforcement will last until the end of December, but could be renewed at the same time as the mandate of the MONUC mission, which also expires then.
The resolution, drawn up by France and co-sponsored by several nations, stressed the temporary increase was to enable "MONUC to reinforce its capacity to protect civilians, to reconfigure its structure and forces and to optimise their deployment."
It further "underscores the importance of MONUC implementing its mandate in full, including through robust rules of engagement."
MONUC is the UN's largest mission currently deployed in the world and was first set up in 2001. About 5,000 UN peacekeepers are based in eastern Nord-Kivu province where fierce fighting flared again at the end of August.
The fighting has pitted government troops against the rebel forces of rebel leader Laurent Nkunda.