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Ban Ki-moon visits Goma in the Congo



(Vatican Radio) UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon arrived in the eastern Congo city of Goma on Thursday, hours after a rebel group fighting government forces nearby said they would impose a cease-fire to permit the visit to take place. The M23 rebels and the Congolese army had been fighting for three days near the city.

At least 20 people have been killed this week fighting between the Congolese army and M23, an insurgency dominated by members of the Tutsi minority. They are calling for political concessions from President Joseph Kabila's government.

Ban Ki-moon on Wednesday met with the Congolese president.

"We are deeply concerned about the recent recurrence of violence by the M23,” Ban said. “I have urged Kabila to give appropriate instruction to the FARDC army to strictly abide by the international humanitarian law and protect the lives of civilian population. This is very important. While addressing all this security situation we have to provide safety and security to the civilian population."

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim is accompanying the UN Secretary-General on his trip, and has pledged $1 billion in fresh development funds to the country.

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