Local sources report that new clashes occurred around Pinga (North Kivu province) between rival factions of the Nduma Defense of Congo - Renové (NDC-R) group on Friday, July 24. Fighting has taken place in the area between the two groups since July 9, with at least 50 people killed to date. Friday's clashes, in Mutongo, came after the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo (FARDC) intervened and took control of Pinga on Thursday, July 23. Authorities reportedly discovered 37 bodies of those deceased in the fighting, with at least four members of the FARDC amongst them.
A spokesman for the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO), stated that the force could not deploy to the area due to the lack of landing strips and the poor quality of the roads leading to it.
Further clashes near Pinga are likely in the near term, and a heightened security presence is to be expected while FARDC operations are ongoing.
The government's limited presence in the DRC's eastern provinces, as well as the presence of numerous armed groups and local self-defense militias, has led to continued insecurity in the area.
Individuals in North Kivu province are advised to remain vigilant for militant activity, monitor developments to the situation, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities and their home governments.
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