August 15th, 2016 18:47 EST
UN Condemns Massacre of Civilians in DR Congo
United Nations Special Envoy for the Great Lakes Region Said Djinnit has strongly condemned the massacre of dozens of civilians during an overnight attack in Beni, located in restive eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), where the UN mission and national authorities have now deployed forces in the wake if the incident.
Attacking a vulnerable, innocent population is unacceptable, " Mr. Djinnit told UN Radio.
We also encourage [ "] the authorities of the DRC and MONUSCO [the UN Organization Stabilization Mission] to increase their cooperation in addressing the scourge of armed groups in eastern DRC in general and Beni, in particular, " he added.
At least 36 people have been killed in the attack which took place on 13 and14 August, in Rwangoma, near the central town of Beni. The attack is believed to have been carried out by the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), a rebel group of Ugandan origin, operating mainly in eastern DRC.
Additionally, in a press release issued earlier today, the Special Envoy noted that [The] attack will not deter from the collective determination to neutralize all negative forces that continue to cause sorrow and atrocities in eastern DRC. "
Mr. Djinnit added that the attack is a reminder of the urgency to implement the commitments of the Peace, Security and Cooperation (PSC) Framework, and the decisions taken in that regard by the Heads of State of the region.
According to the press release, the Special Envoy also reiterated his readiness to continue to support ongoing efforts to end the plague of negative forces in the region, together with other representatives of the guarantors " of the PSC Framework agreement.
Mr. Djinnit also expressed his condolences to the Government and people of the DRC on the deadly incident.
For its part, MONUSCO strongly condemned the killings as an act of barbarism, noting that reports indicate that 31 victims were brought to Beni town, while 5 victims were reportedly buried at the scene of the attack.
MONUSCO, in cooperation with the national forces, known by the French acronym, FARDC, and the national police, deployed forces throughout the territory of Beni to contribute to the protection of the population and prevent further attacks.
Joint patrolling is under way and a senior MONUSCO delegation was expected to fly to Beni today to express support to the national authorities in addressing the situation.
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