At least 30 dead in ethnic violence in northeast Congo
At least 30 people have been killed in two days of ethnic clashes between Hema herders and Lendu farmers in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s northeastern Ituri province, local authorities said on Monday, APA reports quoting Reuters.
Congo has been grappling with a fresh surge of unrest since President Joseph Kabila refused to step down at the end of his mandate in December 2016. His decision emboldened several rebel groups and raised fears that the vast, mineral-rich country is sliding back into civil war.
The latest killings echo the violence of the 1998-2003 war, when thousands of Hema and Lendu killed each other in Ituri, and come after years of relative peace between the two groups.
“The Hema-Lendu conflict has claimed between 30 and 32 lives and left several people injured, thousands of huts burnt down and thousands displaced,” the governor of Ituri, Jefferson Abdallah Penembaka, told Reuters.
“We are currently raising awareness in both communities so as not to dig up old demons,” said Penembaka, adding that police and military presence had also been reinforced in the area.
Congolese army spokesman Captain Carlos Kalombo said he received reports that several houses had been burnt and human lives lost. He confirmed that the army had been deployed to the scene to prevent further killings.
The Hema community said in a statement published on Sunday that 23 people died in an attack led by Lendu militia in Djugu territory. The Lendu were not immediately available for comment and the army spokesman and local officials were unable to verify the Hema account.
Tensions between the Hema and Lendu are longstanding but the region had been relatively peaceful since provincial authorities began touring the area in December to raise awareness of the need for mutual co-existence.
Related news releases
- 25.05.2018Car bomb explosion in Benghazi claims at least 7 lives
- 18.05.2018Congo announces 11 new Ebola cases
- 17.05.2018Egypt's Sisi says U.S. Embassy move to Jerusalem causes instability
- 15.05.2018WHO says 19 dead, 39 infected so far in Congo Ebola outbreak
- 15.05.2018Four Egyptian workers killed by land mine near new capital
- 10.05.2018At least 32 killed as dam bursts on rose farm in Kenya
- 10.05.20181 killed, 2 injured in South Africa mosque attack
- 09.05.2018Al Shabaab blast kills at least 5 in Somali khat market near Mogadishu
- 09.05.2018Ebola outbreak declared in Democratic Republic of Congo
- 09.05.2018Rains wreak havoc in Rwanda, 18 killed
- 08.05.2018Nigeria: Bandit attacks death toll rises to 58
- 08.05.2018Al-Shabaab militants kill 9 Kenyan soldiers
- 06.05.2018Sudanese diplomat killed in Central African Republic
- 05.05.2018Libyan coast guards rescue 80 migrants in open water
- 03.05.2018Thirteen trapped underground at South African gold mine
- 03.05.2018Algeria summons Moroccan ambassador
- 01.05.2018Morocco severs ties with Iran
- 01.05.201824 killed in twin suicide blasts in NE Nigeria
- 29.04.2018Suicide attack kills at least 5 in Somalia
- 28.04.2018Suspected jihadists kill more than 40 Tuaregs in Mali
- 28.04.20182 killed, 36 arrested in mosque raid in Uganda
- 27.04.2018Morocco to start full operation of world's largest solar power complex in October
- 25.04.2018At least 35 people killed in attack on village in southeast Nigeria
- 24.04.2018Heavy rains, landslides kill 18 in Rwanda
- 24.04.2018Two soldiers killed in Tunisia plane crash
- 20.04.2018Swaziland king renames country Kingdom of eSwatini
- 19.04.2018Libya interim govt’s military chief survives murder bid
- 16.04.20189 killed as floods hit Tanzania
- 15.04.2018Mali militants attack bases disguised as UN peacekeepers
- 11.04.2018Death toll in Algerian military plane crash climbs to 257 - UPDATED
- 10.04.2018South Sudan: Former top general launches rebel movement
- 08.04.2018Two dead, 70 wounded in Tunisia bus collision
- 07.04.2018Somalia: Double car bomb attacks kill 3 in Mogadishu
- 06.04.2018Dozens killed in Nigeria clash
- 05.04.2018Consultations begin in Libya in advance of peace talks
- 05.04.2018Ministers meet in Sudan to resume Nile dam talks
- 04.04.2018Muammar Gaddafi's son found not guilty of murder of Libyan footballer
- 03.04.2018AU forces kill 30 al-Shabaab in Somalia
- 30.03.20188 people killed by bomb-laden vehicle in eastern Libya
- 29.03.2018Egypt election: Sisi 'set to win second term as president’
- 07.02.2018Tunisian soldier killed in helicopter crash
- 10.02.2018Bombing at mosque in Libya's Benghazi kills two, wounds 75: medics
- 11.02.2018Over 10 Nigerian hostages rescued from suspected Boko Haram terrorists
- 04.02.2018Russian MP warns new US nuclear doctrine heightens arms race risk
- 04.02.2018Miners' protest raises political temperature in Morocco
- 01.02.20185 dead, 39 injured in multiple explosions in Nigeria