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Congo Blames Rwanda’s Hutu Rebels for Italian Envoy’s Death

Feb 23, 2021

Hutu rebels in Rwanda have denied allegations that they were behind the killing of the Italian ambassador to the Democratic Republic of Congo. They say that the DRC and  Rwandan militaries are behind Luca Attanasio’s killing .

Attanasio had been on a field trip in Goma, one of the most dangerous parts of the DRC, when his convoycame under attack. Africa News reports that he died of his wounds. The Italian government, meanwhile, confirmed his death and also that of an Italian policeman, Vittorio Lacovacci, and an unidentified driver.

The DRC interior ministry has blamed the killings on members of the Rwandan Hutu rebel group, the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda. The FDLR, however, denied the allegation, saying that the ambassador’s convoy was attacked near the Rwandan border, “not far from a position of the DRC armed forces and Rwandan soldiers. Further, the FDLR has called on Kinshasa and the UN peacekeeping force in the region  to “shed light” on the killings “instead of resorting to hasty accusations.”

Meanwhile, a US monitor, Kivu Security Tracker, said that the FDLR were near the place where the attack had taken place, so it was completely possible that they were responsible for it.

United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres has urged a swift investigation of the “heinous targeting” of a World Food Program mission. Italian President Sergio Mattarella condemned the killing of Italy’s ambassador to the DRC as ‘cowardly’.

Umm Muhammed Umar

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