DRC: Civilians flee as DR Congo army pounds Tutsi M23 rebels

012354Congolese government forces supported by helicopters attacked M23 rebel positions near the eastern city of Goma on Tuesday in a third day of heavy fighting that has forced hundreds of villagers to flee their homes and raised tensions with Rwanda. 

M23, a movement launched by Tutsi defectors from the army who accuse the Kinshasa government of reneging on a 2009 peace deal, last year occupied Goma for 10 days before pulling out under international pressure.  

The clashes have focused attention on the role of the United Nations, which is deploying a new force with a mandate to attack rebel groups in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

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