Fresh clashes between the army and M23 rebels have erupted in eastern DR Congo, officials said on Sunday, breaking a period of relative calm between the two sides. A mostly Congolese Tutsi group, the M23 resumed fighting late 2021 after lying dormant for years. It has since captured swathes of territory in North Kivu province, including the strategic town of Bunagana on the Ugandan border in June. The resurgence of the group has destabilised regional relations in central Africa, with the Democratic Republic of Congo accusing its smaller neighbour Rwanda of backing the militia. The frontline between Congolese troops and M23 rebels had been calm in recent weeks. But clashes erupted again on Thursday, violence monitor Kivu Security Tracker stated on Saturday evening. On Sunday, army officials and residents said that M23 fighters had captured the village of Ntamugenga, a strategic target that lies close to the highway leading north out of provincial capital Goma. “The situation is gloomy here,” said village chief Celestin Nyamugira, explaining that M23 fighters had erected a barrier at the entrance to the settlement. “They came from the forest and infiltrated the city.” Congolese Colonel Mavinga Serge confirmed the capture of the village to AFP, but said troops were “next door”. Another officer, Lieutenant Colonel Ndjike Kaiko, said the army was “containing” the rebels.