Islamist Terrorists Kill Malawian Peacekeeper in East Congo: UN

By Reuters
May 11, 2021Africa
Islamist Terrorists Kill Malawian Peacekeeper in East Congo: UN
Blue helmet members of the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo MONUSCO sit on the back of a U.N. pick-up truck in Beni in a file photo. (Alain Wandimoyi/AFP via Getty Images)

BENI, Democratic Republic of Congo—A female peacekeeper from Malawi was killed in an attack by an Islamist terrorists in eastern Congo’s North Kivu province on Monday morning, the U.N. and the Malawian government said.

A local civil rights group said separately that fighters with the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), an Islamist terrorist group with Ugandan origins, attacked the village of Kilia, around 11 miles southeast of Beni in the province, killing at least five people. It was not clear if that figure included the peacekeeper.

“A peacekeeper was killed in an attack by alleged ADF in the Beni region,” said MONUSCO, the U.N. peacekeeping mission, which has deployed around 12,000 troops to contain violence by more than 120 armed groups in the east of the country.

Chitenji Kamanga, 28, was killed when the U.N. base in the village of Kilia, was attacked at 1:30 p.m. local time, the Malawi Defense Force (MDF) said in a statement.

“Malawi has lost a courageous, hardworking, and disciplined female soldier,” the MDF said.

In March the United States labelled the ADF a foreign terrorist organization because of alleged links to the Islamic State group, although the U.N. has consistently downplayed the strength and nature of Islamic State’s influence in the Congo.

The last peacekeeper killed in the Congo was an Indonesian national on June 22 last year. More than 370 have been killed since the U.N. first sent troops during the civil war in 1999.

The ADF, which has been active in Congo since the 1990s, has carried out a string of reprisal attacks on civilians since the army began operations against it in late 2019, killing around 850 people last year, according to the U.N.

By Fiston Mahamba

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