About 82 people have been killed in ethnic violence since Sunday in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s west.
George Kapiamba, head of the Congolese Association for Access to Justice (ACAJ) told newsmen that “There are 82 confirmed dead,”
The figures Kapiamba cited were according to witnesses, they were backed up by one man who escaped the violence.
The survivor in speaking to AFP said, “according to what I’ve learnt, there are 80 people dead”.
On Tuesday the governor of the western Mai-Ndombe province, where the violence broke out, put the provisional toll at 45 dead with more than 60 injured.
Meanwhile, earlier in December, seventeen people were killed in two attacks by the ADF militant group in the troubled Benin region of eastern DR Congo, a local mayor said Friday.
Twelve civilians died in Mangolikene on the outskirts of Beni city in North Kivu on Thursday while another five were killed overnight in the Paida area, mayor Nyonyi Masumbuko Bwanakana told AFP.
Explosions were heard overnight in Paida, according to local civil society representative Kizito Bin Hangi.
The regional army’s spokesman said the five killings in Paida happened during an attack on barracks in the city.
“We are searching for ADF (fighters),” Captain Mak Hazukay said.
The government has often blamed the group for killings, robberies, and kidnappings, but sometimes it is unclear who the true assailants are.
The Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) is a shadowy armed group rooted in Ugandan Islamism that has killed hundreds of people since 2014.
ADF was forced out of Uganda and now the group operates in the border area in the DRC’s North Kivu province, an area where other armed groups are also active.
On Tuesday 11th of December, the group reportedly struck again killing nine civilians.
The massacre occurred overnight in the town of Oicha, in the Beni region, local administrator Donat Kibwana told AFP.
The assailants were suspected members of the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), an armed group blamed for hundreds of killings since 2014.
“They entered Oicha late at night, they pillaged and made off with farm animals. We lost nine people in the attack,” Kibwana said.
The toll was confirmed separately by military spokesman Mak Hazukay.
“The ADF got around our position and carried out their dirty work in eastern Oicha… there are nine civilians dead,” he said.
Local teacher Prospere Kasereka said “the ADF arrived in my area around 7.30pm. They started looting, smashing down doors and firing guns.”
He added: “I fled when they got in my house. I saw the bodies of nine inhabitants this morning.”
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