MOSCOW, November 24 (Sputnik) — Islamic militants of the Allied Democratic Forces, originating from Uganda and aligned with the Al-Shabaab terrorist organization, have allegedly massacred about 100 civilians in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo near the Ugandan border, a region where civilian killings and clashes with the Congolese army are common.
“I have a figure of 95 bodies buried in a common grave," as well as “nine others that were shown to authorities in a morgue," opposition MP Juma Balikwisha said as quoted by AFP.
The Parliament majority is more cautious in their estimates. “We still don’t have a definitive toll. It lies between 70 and 100 people killed," said Albert Baliesima, an MP for the parliamentary majority supporting President Joseph Kabila.
Locals say the 95 dead bodies were found in a bush and later interred near the rural settlement of Tepiomba.
The UN representative in the region, Said Djinnit, said in a statement “that the worsening situation in the Beni area … calls for decisive action towards neutralising all negative forces in the DRC, as per the decisions of the regional leaders and the UN Security Council,” without actually naming the entities possibly involved in the killings.
President Kabila vowed to “win against the terrorists” in late October, however, the inability of his government to put an end to the violence in the area caused a street protest on November 2 with local residents dismantling the statue of the president and burning flags of the ruling coalition.The ADF Islamic militants, roughly 400 in number, are contained by the joint FARDC-UN forces, and the scope of their operation is limited. The mass killings, therefore, might have been committed by some other entity, hostile to local residents.