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14.11.2019 Congo

Two killed in DR Congo's Virunga national park

By AFP
Virunga is home to a world-famous population of mountain gorillas.  By CHARLY KASEREKA (AFP/File)
NOV 14, 2019 CONGO
Virunga is home to a world-famous population of mountain gorillas. By CHARLY KASEREKA (AFP/File)

Gunmen killed a guard and a driver's help while they were crossing Virunga, Africa's oldest national park in DR Congo's restive east, park authorities said Thursday.

They ambushed a convoy overnight in the park in the Democratic Republic of Congo's Nord Kivu province, which is infested by rebel groups and militias, the Virunga National Park said in a statement.

The deaths followed a "nocturnal attack carried out by armed men on a civilian convoy carrying supplies that the guards were accompanying," it said.

"A second guard was wounded but his life is not in danger," it said.

Virunga, which is spread over 7,800 square kilometres (3,000 square miles) over the borders of DRC, Rwanda and Uganda, is home to a world-famous population of mountain gorillas but has been hit by rising instability and violence.

A total of 176 park guards have been killed so far, according to a Virunga toll in March.

The park was closed for nine months following the killing of nine people including a ranger, but was reopened in February after a security review.

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