U.N. forces hold memorial service for Tanzanian officer killed in DRC
Saturday, August 31, 2013 - 00:52
Aug. 31 - U.N. forces in the DRC hold memorial service for a Tanzanian officer killed in clashes with the M23 rebels in the east of the DRC Tuesday. Rough Cut. (no reporter narration)
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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION)
STORY: United Nations forces in the Democratic Republic of Congo held a memorial service on Saturday for a Tanzanian solider killed on Wednesday.
The peacekeeping solider, Major Hatim Shabaan Mushindo, died during an operation with the Congolese army to drive back M23 rebels from the city of Goma in eastern Congo.
He was the first death since the new U.N. brigade engaged rebels last week.
A 3,000-strong U.N. intervention brigade, with a tough new mandate to protect civilians and neutralize armed groups in the mineral-rich central African nation, sprang into action last week after the United Nations accused the rebels of shelling the city.
The intervention brigade consists of troops from Tanzania, South Africa and Malawi and is commanded by General James-Aloys Mwakibolwa from Tanzania, who spoke during the memorial.
"This brave major was the commander of our mechanized company, which was involved in the fight against M23 alongside the Congolese national army (FARDC). He dedicated his life to assist in the bringing of peace in the eastern DRC of which he has died for," he said.
The M23 rebels, who have fought an 18-month uprising in the eastern borderlands of the Democratic Republic of Congo, said they quit the Kibati hills to allow an independent investigation into shelling that has killed civilians in Goma and the lakeside town of Gisenyi in neighboring Rwanda.
Millions of people have died from violence, disease and hunger since the 1990s as foreign-backed rebel groups have fought for control of eastern Congo's rich deposits of gold, diamonds and tin, destabilizing Africa's Great Lakes region.
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