Rebel fighters defy retreat deadline as Ugandan troops join regional force in DR Congo.

Ugandan troops, as part of the East African regional military force, have entered the east DR Congo border town of Bunagana on Friday to supervise the gradual withdrawal of the M23 rebel group. The M23 has conquered territories in the eastern Congo after taking up arms again in late 2021. The Ugandan contingent, which is expected to eventually comprise 2,000 troops, entered Bunagana on Friday morning. The soldiers are not supposed to fight against M23 but will occupy some of their positions as a neutral force. The EAC decided last June to create a military force to stabilize eastern Congo, which has been affected by armed groups for decades. The deadline for the withdrawal of all armed groups was supposed to be on March 30 but was not met. The Democratic Republic of Congo accuses Rwanda of backing the M23, which the United States, other Western countries, and independent UN experts agree with, but Kigali denies.

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