At least eight people have been killed in a suspected rebel attack in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and others have been reported missing, police said, in the latest bloodshed blamed on armed rebels in the troubled region.
Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) fighters “slit the throats of eight people today in broad daylight. Thankfully, our intervention prevented a worse toll,” Major Losendjola Morisho, police chief in Mangina in the Beni region, told the AFP news agency on Friday.
“About another 20 others are also missing in the area,” said Morisho. “We don’t know if they have been killed, taken hostage or fled the area. We are searching for them.”
It was the latest killing blamed on rebel fighters in the Beni region, where hundreds have died in violence since November.
DR Congo’s east has been hit by months of attacks and massacres blamed on the ADF, which is the target of a military offensive.
In January, 36 civilians were killed in an attack in Oicha, also in Beni, in what activists say was part of the militia group’s revenge attacks on civilians for the army campaign.
The ADF, blamed for the deaths of more than a thousand civilians in Beni since October 2014, began as a rebel group in Uganda that opposed Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni.
It fell back into eastern DRC in 1995 during the Congo Wars and appears to have halted raids inside Uganda. Its recruits today are people of various nationalities.