Kinshasa: An Indian peacekeeper with the UN mission in Democratic Republic of Congo was shot dead on Monday when armed men attacked government troops in the troubled eastern Goma region, the MONUC force said.
According to a UN source, a Congolese soldier and a civilian were also killed in the attack, while three troops and a second civilian were injured.
“A Congolese Armed Forces (FARDC) patrol was attacked by armed men. A MONUC vehicle patrol that was in the area took up position and was shot at by the assailants,” MONUC spokesman Madnodje Mounoubai told AFP.
“An Indian soldier was wounded. He died after being transferred by helicopter to Goma’s hospital.”
The incident took place at around 1:00pm on a road crossing the Virunga national park, around 80 kilometres north of Goma, the capital of DR Congo’s troubled Nord-Kivu province.
The assailants’ identity was unknown.
For more than a decade the volatile east of the DR Congo has been the scene of attacks and fighting involving several armed groups, including the FDLR Rwandan Hutu rebel group and Mai-Mai tribal militias.
The Mai-Mai were recently integrated in the Congolese army but control their own territory in neighbouring Sud-Kivu province and are intent on overturning the military command in the area.
The Congolese army with logistical support from the UN mission has conducted several military operations to try to bring peace and stability to the east of the vast central African country.