France on Thursday sought an emergency UN Security Council meeting after a surge of fighting in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, envoys said.
The meeting was called for Thursday after a UN peacekeeper was killed in a clash with M23 rebels near the key eastern city of Goma.
There are also mounting diplomatic tensions, with Security Council member Rwanda -- which has been accused of backing the rebels -- blocking a bid to impose UN sanctions on two M23 leaders, diplomats said.
New fighting flared around Goma on Thursday with DR Congo government forces, backed by UN troops, shelling rebel positions. UN attack helicopters also targeted the M23.
Rwandan officials said a Rwandan woman was killed when a shell landed across the border.
Rwanda, a temporary member of the 15-nation Security Council, has blocked a council press statement condemning the death of the Tanzanian peacekeeper, diplomats said.
If the objections are maintained, it would be the first time the Council has not released a statement on the death of a peacekeeper.
UN experts and the DR Congo government accuse Rwanda of backing the M23, which has been battling government forces for more than a year, allegations denied by Kigali.
But Rwanda has blocked a US-French bid to extend UN sanctions to two M23 commanders, Vianney Kazarama and Erick Mboneza, diplomats said.
Rwanda said the evidence submitted against the two was not strong enough, according to envoys.