The Democratic Republic of Congo’s army says it has launched an offensive against militia groups that plague the east of the country.
A military spokesman General Richard Kasonga said rebel positions had been shelled and ground troops have been engaged.
He said the aim was to eradicate all domestic and foreign groups that have destabilised the eastern region for nearly a quarter of a century.
The operation was launched from Beni, in North Kivu province which borders Uganda and Rwanda; it is an area targeted by the Ugandan armed group, the Allied Democratic Forces, or ADF – which has killed hundreds of people.
Last week five of the countries in the region – the DR Congo, Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda and Tanzania – agreed to combine their military operations to target cross-border insecurity.