URN.Colonel Jean Baptiste Munyapandi, the administrator of Mambasa territory says that the situation is due to the fact that a large part of this territory is under the command of military operations in North Kivu.
Three people were killed and four police officers taken hostage in an attack by suspected Allied Democratic Force (ADF) rebels on Bela village, Mambasa territory, Ituri province Eastern Democratic of Congo (DRC) in the wee hours of Monday morning.
According to locals, the rebels emerged from the bush and ambushed public transport vehicles that had left Makumu town heading to Beni in North Kivu province. Christophe Kengele Mayao, a civil society activist in Bela village, says that rebels subsequently attacked the government army FARDC position in the area and an exchange of fire ensued.
In the process, Mayao says the rebels torched two vehicles. Mayao says that the attack forced several residents to flee to neighboring entities to save their lives. He criticizes the low number of government soldiers deployed in the area, saying that it could be the cause of such ambushes.
Colonel Jean Baptiste Munyapandi, the administrator of Mambasa territory says that the situation is due to the fact that a large part of this territory is under the command of military operations in North Kivu. He however says that the matter is being discussed with the Minister of Defense, Gilbert Kabanda who is camping in Bunia on a mission to neutralize ADF rebels in the eastern part of the country.
Late last month, Uganda and the DRC armies launched joint military operations against the ADF, with Ugandan forces mounting air and artillery raids against the group’s bases and sending thousands of troops across the border.
On Thursday last week, Uganda and Congolese Defense Ministries signed a defense and security agreement aimed at conducting operations against armed groups specifically ADF rebels in Ituri and North Kivu provinces. The agreement was signed by the Ugandan Defense and Veteran Affairs Minister, Vincent Bamulangaki Ssempijja, and the Congolese Defense Minister, Gilbert Kabanda.
In their joint communiqué, the two countries reaffirmed and endorsed that the pooling of forces aims to track down all armed groups and negative forces, specifically the ADF, and create stability in Eastern DRC. Despite the efforts to neutralize them, the rebels have continued to carry out new surprise attacks in North Kivu and Ituri provinces.
The rebels attacked Mangina-Mantumbi axis in the territory of Beni on Wednesday last week and killed 16 people. They also looted pharmacies and business houses.