At least 10 people were killed Sunday night in clashes between the army and suspected Ugandan rebels in east DR Congo, activists said, in an area that has suffered a string of massacres since 2014.
“Suspected ADF (Allied Democratic Forces) attacked Beni from the north overnight… Eight civilians were shot dead, a soldier was killed and a suspected ADF militant was also killed,” local civil society chief Gilbert Kambale told AFP.
The Allied Democratic Forces, a partly Islamist armed group of Ugandan origin, are accused of a litany of human rights abuses and being involved with kidnappings and smuggling.
Various rebel groups operate in the region around the town of Beni, an area plagued by violence fuelled by ethnic rivalry and disputes over the right to exploit local mining and forest resources.
The area has witnessed a series of mass killings that have claimed more than 700 lives since 2014.
In March, a report by the Congo Research Group at New York University claimed that soldiers from the regular army had also participated in some of the killings.
The violence in the east adds to existing tension in DR Congo, where fears are mounting that President Joseph Kabila plans to hold on to power after his second mandate expires in December.Punch