Two aid workers killed in eastern DR Congo

DR Congo's huge eastern region has long been wracked by violence, but fighting between government soldiers and militia groups, as well as inter-ethnic clashes, has increased since 2017.  By Alain WANDIMOYI (AFP/File)

DR Congo’s huge eastern region has long been wracked by violence, but fighting between government soldiers and militia groups, as well as inter-ethnic clashes, has increased since 2017. By Alain WANDIMOYI (AFP/File)

Two aid workers employed by a French charity that helps provide water were killed in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo and a third is still missing, the United Nations said Monday.

The two Hydraulique Sans Frontieres (HYFRO) employees were killed Saturday near Mushikiri in North Kivu province while on duty, UN spokesman Farhan Haq said.

Haq did not provide details of their nationalities, but a statement from the UN humanitarian office in Kinshasa said they were targeted by “unidentified gunmen.”

“Deteriorating security conditions in North Kivu are worrying, and represent a major obstacle of the delivery of humanitarian assistance to thousands of people in need,” said the UN spokesman.

DR Congo’s huge eastern region has long been wracked by violence, but fighting between government soldiers and militia groups, as well as inter-ethnic clashes, has increased since 2017.

North Kivu province, which borders Uganda and Rwanda, has seen a particular uptick in killings and kidnappings between rival ethnic groups.

Fifteen UN peacekeepers were killed in an attack in December on their base in the Beni territory of North Kivu blamed on ADF rebels, one of the worst to target UN peacekeepers in DR Congo in recent history.

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