GOMA, Congo (AP) — A new effort by U.N. peacekeepers to disarm fighters in volatile eastern Congo is now in effect.

The U.N. mission known as MONUSCO on Thursday said it had established a security zone in the city of Goma and its northern suburbs.

The area has been the scene of attacks on army positions by rebels from the group known as M23.

U.N. spokesman Martin Nesirky said Thursday that U.N. peacekeepers and Congolese security forces will patrol "to ensure that the area is free of unauthorized weapons."

M23 formed as a mutiny last year and briefly held Goma last November. Peace talks with the government have repeatedly stalled.

The U.N. mission's statement said the disarmament plan would involve elements of a newly formed intervention brigade and could be expanded to other areas.