UN official in Congo says its force, with government troops, ready to attack rebels in east

The special representative for the United Nations Congo force says it is militarily prepared to strike against Rwandan rebel positions when given orders by the president.

Martin Kobler, head of MONUSCO, said late Saturday that the aim of the force is to restore peace in Eastern Congo. He said military action is the only viable action at this point, given that voluntary disarmament by the rebels has not happened by the extended Jan. 2 deadline.

The Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda rebel group was formed by extremist Rwandan Hutus who took part in the 1994 genocide and then fled across the border. The group has been accused of atrocities and crimes against humanity. It has been in the mineral-rich Eastern Congo for the last 20 years.