A United Nations-backed radio station says that the Congo army has launched an offensive against rebels in South Kivu in eastern Congo.

Radio Okapi reported Tuesday that soldiers were deploying to the area where they found members of the Rwandan Hutu rebel group, known by its French acronym FDLR.

Residents told the station that there has been gunfire since early Tuesday morning.

The Congolese army has vowed to oust the rebels after they failed to meet a Jan. 2 deadline to disarm.

Eastern Congo has been plagued by a myriad of armed rebels in the two decades since the Rwandan genocide. The FDLR includes Rwandan Hutus who committed the 1994 massacres and fled into Congo. The instability has allowed other fighters to flourish as well.