Nineteen suspected Congolese rebels have been charged in a South African court with plotting a coup against President Joseph Kabila.
Prosecutors said the men belonged to the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Union of Nationalists for Renewal (UNR) rebel group.
South Africa’s counter-terrorism forces arrested them earlier this week in the northern Limpopo province.
DR Congo has been hit by rebellions throughout Mr Kabila’s rule.
He took power in 2001, following the assassination of his father, Laurent Kabila.
One of the suspected coup plotters has been identified as US citizen James Kazongo, AP news agency reports.
“South African authorities got in touch with our consular officers, who have visited him. We have been in touch with him and communicated with his family and provided consular services,” US embassy spokesman Jack Hillmeyer told AP.
Fierce fighting broke out in the Syrian capital, Damascus, as rebels attacked forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad, witnesses and rebels said.
Much of the violence was centred around the Jobar district and a key junction on the Damascus ring road.
But it was not clear whether the rebels managed to retain any territory they claimed in battle, and the Syrian army said it too launched an offensive.
Earlier, reports said bombings in the town of Palmyra killed 19 people.
The violence in both Damascus and Palmyra came as the head of the main Syrian opposition alliance, Moaz al-Khatib, said his offer of talks with the government would be withdrawn unless women prisoners were released by Sunday.