SUSPECTED Islamist militants killed at least 19 people and burned a medical facility in a raid on a village in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo early on Sunday, two regional officials and a resident said.
The attack, which occurred around 1 a.m. (2300 GMT) in the village of Kirindera in North Kivu province, took place just a few kilometres from another attack on a village where at least 35 people were killed last week.
The army blamed last week’s attack on the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), a Ugandan armed group based in eastern Congo that has pledged allegiance to Islamic State and conducts frequent raids on villages.
A resident of a nearby village and a member of the local civil society blamed Sunday’s attack on the ADF too.
“Gunfire was heard around Kirindera. The ADF arrived, they set fire to a hospital after looting it with medicines, and they set fire to a hotel,” said Sadame Patanguli, the resident.
He said that the militants kidnapped several others, who are now missing.
The details of the burned buildings and the death toll were confirmed by two regional officials.
The ADF was created in Uganda before moving to eastern Congo in the 1990s, and has been blamed for thousands of deaths in the last decade.
Congo’s government declared a state of siege in North Kivu and neighbouring Ituri province in 2021, in an attempt to stem rampant militia violence in the country’s vast mineral-rich east.
But the killings and rebel activity have not shown any sign of abating. (Reuters/NAN)