The Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) rebels have occupied the entire territory of Shabunda in eastern DRC after government troops in the area vacated and reportedly went for training.
Areas affected include Tshamambe, Tshemalizi and Mulungu.
Civil society groups in south Kivu say the FDLR rebels are committing atrocities against civilians and have erected roadblocks where they are charging 2,000 Congolese Francs (2$) per person.
Colonel Delphin Kahimbi, the Operation Commander of Amani Leo campaign said FARDC forces had left for training as part of the restructuring of army units to strengthen their capacity.
In the meantime, Congolese civilians are paying the price as they are victims of the many atrocities being committed by the rebels with a risk of serious human rights violations.
This latest occupation by FDLR has reminded Congolese of the infamous Luvungi atrocities where in September last year FDLR rebels occupied the village and committed over 500 mass rapes against women and children for 4 consecutive days.