At least 33 killed in east DR Congo clashes: Monitor
At least 33 people, including militia members and civilians, were killed following a militia attack on Mongbwalu in Ituri province in DR Congo.
At least 33 people were killed following a militia attack on a town in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, a respected monitor said Saturday, raising an earlier reported death toll.
Kivu Security Tracker, the monitor, tweeted that at least 33 people -- including militia members and civilians -- had died following an attack by the CODECO militia on Mongbwalu in Ituri province. However, it did not specify how many of the dead were civilians.
The death toll raises an earlier reported death toll of 22 people killed during the attack on Mongbwalu town.
Earlier this week, town Mayor Jean-Pierre Bikilisende told AFP that 22 dead bodies were discovered following clashes between the militants and Congolese troops.
He said that 14 civilians and eight militants were killed, explaining that CODECO members had been staging attacks since Tuesday; in a bid to free fellow fighters captured by Congolese security forces.
The CODECO -- the Cooperative for the Development of the Congo -- is a political-religious group that claims to represent the interests of the Lendu ethnic group.
It is considered one of the deadliest of the more than 120 militias operating in the troubled eastern part of the country and is to blame for a number of ethnic massacres in Ituri.
Last year, Congo's government put security officials in charge of Ituri and neighboring North Kivu province in a bid to curb violence, but the attacks continue.