Kinshasa procures four new attack helicopters
The DRC government is continuing to beef up its military capabilities in order to deal with the M23, its latest acquisition being four MI-24s from the Chadian army.
DRC president Felix Tshisekedi will travel to Beijing on 26 May for a bilateral meeting with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, during which an attempt to find a solution to the dispute over the mining firm Sicomines could be made.
During a closed-door meeting, the East African Community's regional force expressed concern about the lack of synergy between the military and political responses to the crisis in eastern DRC. Kinshasa, meanwhile, has made discreet efforts to open channels of communication with the M23 rebels.
A high-level delegation from the China National Aero-Technology Import & Export Corp (CATIC) travelled last week to Kinshasa, accompanied by officers from the People's Liberation Army (PLA), to try to sell its JF-17 Thunder fighter jets to DR Congo.
The Congolese army is struggling to contain the M23 rebel group. In seeking to reverse the balance of power, Kinshasa has bought military drones from China and hired private Romanian soldiers operating under the command of a French Foreign Legion veteran.