Militant attack in Congo kills 8 civilians

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Eight civilians died overnight in DR Congo’s volatile city of Beni in a fresh militant attack and angry residents torched the town hall on Monday, an AFP reporter said.

An army spokesman confirmed the latest casualties.

There have been a string of rallies against local forces and UN peacekeepers in Beni for failing to stop attacks by the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) militia.

More than 60 civilians have been massacred in the Beni region since military action against the ADF began at the start of November.

The ADF began as a rebellion hostile to Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni. They fell back into eastern DRC in 1995 and have recruited people of different nationalities, but appear to have halted raids inside Uganda.

The UN peacekeeping mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo, known by its French acronym MONUSCO, on Saturday said the Congolese army had launched the offensive unilaterally.

“MONUSCO cannot engage in operations in a war zone without being asked and without strict coordination with the national army,” it said in a tweet, adding that uncoordinated action could lead to friendly fire.

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