KINSHASA : Five UN peacekeeping troops were wounded Monday when two people on a motorcycle threw a grenade at their patrol in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, the UN force said Tuesday.
The UN mission for the stabilisation of the country (MONUSCO) said in a statement the attack occurred in the area of Beni in North Kivu province. It did not say how seriously the troops were hurt.
“This unacceptable attack... does not in any way reduce our support for FARDC (DRC Armed Forces) in the fight against armed groups,” MONUSCO chief Martin Kobler said in the statement. “Our brief is to neutralise all the illegal armed groups in the east of the DRC, and we are determined to carry it out,” he added.
Beni is more than 300 kilometres north of Goma, the capital of North Kivu, a restive resource-rich province that borders Rwanda and Uganda.
On January 16 the FARDC regular army launched an offensive against the Ugandan Muslim rebel group ADF-Nalu and announced in mid-February that it had inflicted severe losses on the rebels.
The UN provides them with logistical and tactical support to the FARDC, but on Saturday, for the first time since the start of the operation, two MONSUCO attack helicopters fired on a large ADF-Nalu base.
ADF-Nalu stands for Allied Democratic Forces-National Army for the Liberation of Uganda. It is one of the oldest but lesser known rebellions based in North-Kivu and is considered the only Islamist organisation in the region.