At least 15 persons were killed on Sunday, Jan. 16, in two separate attacks by rebels in Ituri province of eastern DR Congo.
Ngandjole Assani, leader of the local civil society, disclosed that the rebels burnt down houses, looted shops, and killed six persons including four women.
Assani said rebels of the Cooperative pour le Développement du Congo (CODECO) carried out the attack.
“When these CODECO rebels entered here in Mabanga, there were no soldiers of the Congolese national army FARDC,” he stated.
Further south in Irumu territory, a coalition of CODECO rebels and Force Patriotique et Integrationnise du Congo (FPIC) entered the village of Kokonyangi/Mumu and according to Jonas Lemi Zorabo, the traditional ruler of Babao-Bokoe zone, Jonas Lemi Zorabo, “11 corpses were later found while 10 other persons were wounded.”
Researchers of the Kivu Security Barometre (KSB) however say the number of dead in Kokonyangi/Mumu is nine.
The spokesperson of the DR Congo national army, FARDC in Ituri confirmed the two attacks but did not give exact casualty figures and other details.
CODECO is an armed group structured under the auspices of a religious sect in Ituri and it claims to defend the interests of the Lendu tribe against the DR Congo army and Hema tribe.
It is accused of being behind the violence which has ravaged Ituri since 2017 after 20 years of relative calm.
Their attacks were sporadic at first but they became more frequent and extended in 2019 with well structured armed community factions, including the FPIC.
The Ituri and North Kivu provinces have been under a state of siege since May 6, 2021 but neither this measure nor military operations have put an end to the daily violence and exactions by armed groups in the provinces.
On Monday, Jan. 17, angry crowds blocked the major highway in North Kivu after a mother and her son were killed by FARDC soldiers in the locality of Oicha, according to the Mayor of the council, Nicolas Kikuku.
Support Our Journalism
There are millions of ordinary people affected by conflict in Africa whose stories are missing in the mainstream media. HumAngle is determined to tell those challenging and under-reported stories, hoping that the people impacted by these conflicts will find the safety and security they deserve.
To ensure that we continue to provide public service coverage, we have a small favour to ask you. We want you to be part of our journalistic endeavour by contributing a token to us.
Your donation will further promote a robust, free, and independent media.Donate Here