Seven killed in eastern DR Congo city

The death toll in a suspected militia attack has risen to seven, an army spokesman told AFP on Friday, after armed men attacked civilians and a military position in the eastern DR Congo city of Beni.

The attackers raided the city's southern district of Rwangoma overnight, said regional spokesman Major Mak Hazukay, who updated the previous toll of five dead.

"We have unfortunately found two other bodies," he said.

"These two civilians were killed with machetes. The attack was carried out by the ADF (Allied Democratic Forces)," Hazukay said.

The ADF is a shadowy Islamist-rooted group that arose in western Uganda in 1995 and has been blamed for hundreds of killings since 2014.

"Fighting is under way. ADF are attempting an incursion in the city of Oisha (north of Beni) and in Mbau-Kamango they attacked an army position," said Hazukay.

Local resident Kizito Bin Hangi said that the assailants had wielded machetes and guns and that residents, outraged by the killings, demonstrated afterwards.

More than a hundred armed groups, both local and foreign, are active in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Hundreds of civilians have died in the Beni area alone in the last five years.

Newly-elected President Felix Tshisekedi promised while on the campaign trail to restore security to the troubled region.

On Friday he reiterated that pledge while on a visit to neighbouring Republic of Congo, also known as Congo-Brazzaville.

"My priority is peace. We can not run this country with insecurity in the east and other areas," Tshisekedi said in Brazzaville, according to radio Okapi.


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