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Mai Mai Rebels Attack Mikenge Camp In DRC

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Dozens of members of Banyamulenge tribe have been seriously injured after a group of armed men suspected to be of Mai Mai group attacked the Internally Displaced Peoples (IDP) camp at Mikenge in south Kivu province.

Witnesses said the attackers on Thursday penetrated through the security rings around and entered the camp shooting mercilessly- Josue Basanda the camp leader told local press.

Mikenge camp is heavily guarded by MONUSCO forces and supported by the Congolese Military. It is not known how the Mai Mai militia managed to evade the tight security around the camp and cause damage without apprehension.

“Many heads of cattle were taken including foodstuffs and other items,” Basanda said.

Ganda Abdourahamane the head of Monusco office in Uvira said one Mai Mai fighter was killed on site during a shootout. “Even a Monusco soldier was injured in the attack,” Ganda said

Kasereka Dieudonne the spokesperson for Operation Sokola II in South Kivu confirmed the deadly attack saying that they managed to repulse the militia.

On Tuesday, the Mai Mai militia also conducted a string of coordinated attacks in villages of Minembwe especially at Kabingo and Kivumu. The militia were repulsed by youth vigilante group known as Twirwaneho.

Meanwhile, Minembwe Bourgoumestre Gad Nzabinesha says there has been repeated gun fire overheard at Madegu trading centre which is heavily guarded by the Congolese military.

Banyamulenge tribe in South Kivu settled in territories of Fizi, Mwenga and Uvira have endured ethnic cleansing attacks since 2017. There seems to be no intervention from the Congolese government and the international community- this has led to deaths, displacement and fleeing of hundreds of Banyamulenge people to neighbouring countries and other destinations across the globe.

At the beginning of May, the Banyamulenge community petitioned the United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres. They are seeking an end to ethnic cleansing targeting people of their tribe.

“The undersigned, acting on behalf of the Banyamulenge community, write this letter to bring to your attention our deep concerns about the escalating violence increasingly taking the shape of genocidal killings and ethnic cleansing targeting members of the Banyamulenge (community),” the petition reads in part.

“We’re targeted mainly because we’re an ethnic minority in DRC. We’re a small Tutsi community that has been living in South Kivu for centuries, noted Adele Kibasumba one of the signatories of the petition.