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UN intervention brigade in Congo opened fire at border post causing loss of life (Updated)

protesters ransack un peacekeepers' offices in eastern dr congo
File Photo: Congolese protesters set up a fire barricade outside a United Nations peacekeeping force's warehouse in Goma in the North Kivu province of the Democratic Republic of Congo earlier in July

Soldiers returning from leave to a United Nations intervention brigade in Democratic Republic of Congo opened fire at a border post, leading to an unknown number of deaths, the U.N. peacekeeping force said on Sunday.

The incident at the Congo – Uganda border post in Kasindi in the restive eastern part of the country is the latest involving the peacekeeping mission in Congo, known as MONUSCO, which has come under pressure from days of protests.

It was not clear why the soldiers opened fire.

“This serious incident has caused loss of life and serious injuries,” Bintou Keita, Special Representative of the Secretary General of the United Nations in Congo, said in a statement.

Keita said an investigation had begun and the suspected perpetrators arrested.

“Faced with this unspeakable and irresponsible behaviour, the perpetrators of the shooting were identified and arrested pending the conclusions of the investigation which has already started in collaboration with the Congolese authorities,” she said.

She added contact had been made with the country of origin of the soldiers so that legal proceedings can be initiated urgently. She did not name the country.

Since protests began last Monday, at least 20 people, including three peacekeepers have been killed.

The protests were spurred by complaints that the mission has failed to protect civilians against militia violence that has raged for years in the region.

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