The death toll from clashes, which began last week between security forces and a militia group in the Democratic Republic of Congo, has now risen to 49, a regional governor has said.
Alex Kande, governor of Kasai-Central province, said late Monday that 16 security personnel, 27 militiamen and six civilians had been killed in the fighting.
Among the civilian deaths are three children and three women, who were also mutilated by the militiamen.
Congolese security forces arrested 185 militiamen, aged between 20 and 45 years, following last week’s clashes, the governor said. They also recovered weapons, including three AK-47s and several sharp-edged weapons, from them, he added.
“It is indeed a militia group that we have managed to contain. Currently, there are a large number of military men and police in the city. We are even trying to control the entire province to prevent any form of insecurity,” Kande told Anadolu Agency on Sunday.
He said the fighting had caused extensive damage, including to the Kananga airport, which was attacked by the militia on Thursday.
According to Congolese interior minister, calm had been now restored to the city.
Over 68 people have been killed in one month in Kasai Central following the militia attacks.
In August, police killed the alleged leader of the group during a security operation.
The unnamed militia group started its attacks last year after a village head said he would remove Congolese security forces from the province, claiming the police and army personnel harass the local population.
Source – AA