Environment & Climate ChangeNews

1 Ecoguard Killed By Armed Gang In Virunga National Park, DR Congo

Clashes between ecoguards and rebel militia groups are rampant in the Virunga National park.

One ecoguard was killed by armed persons in the Virunga National Park situated in the troubled eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“It is with great sadness that the Virunga National Park announces the death of guard Bizimana Karabaranga Emery this morning, Oct. 15, 2021 in the sub region of Chanika in the province of North Kivu,” read a communique by the National Park authorities on Friday, Oct. 15.

“Aged 31, our colleague was a victim of a shot from a group of uncivilized individuals not yet identified at this stage. He died of his wounds before his evacuation to a health structure for medical attention.”

Sources told HumAngle that soldiers of the DR Congo national army, FARDC, were present among the eco-guards when the attack happened.

A father of two, Bizimana was recruited into the Congolese Institute for the Preservation of Nature in 2017. A first class guard, he was a patrolman within the support mobile units, the National Park communique divulged.

The incident comes on the heels of the take-over by eco-guards early this month, of a large zone of 144 km2 situated in the Virunga National Park on the southwest bank of Lake Edward, Chanika region.

Clashes between ecoguards and rebel militia groups are rampant in the park and since 2020 over twenty rangers have been killed in the Virunga National Park.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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