The Secretary General of United Nations Antonio Guterres has condemned the killing of Malawian peacekeepers in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
The six Malawian peacekeepers and a Tanzanian soldier were killed during joint operations carried out by United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) and the Forces armées de la République démocratique du Congo (FARDC) against the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF).
According to the statement that the UN SG has released, initial reports indicate that ten additional peacekeepers were wounded, and another one is missing.
“Several FARDC soldiers and an unknown number of ADF fighters were also reportedly killed or wounded during the operations.
“The Secretary-General expresses his deepest sympathy and heartfelt condolences to the families of the killed peacekeepers and the Governments and people of the Republic of Malawi and the United Republic of Tanzania,” reads the statement.
The UN SG has since wished a prompt recovery to the wounded and has conveyed his strong support to the Malawian and Tanzanian contingents, which continue to operate in an exceptionally difficult environment to protect local populations against the attacks of the ADF and other armed groups.
The Secretary-General has also called on all armed groups to stop their destabilizing activities, which continue to add to the suffering of the population and complicate the response to the ongoing Ebola outbreak.
Guterres has encouraged the Congolese authorities to continue taking the necessary measures to apprehend and bring to justice the perpetrators of attacks against civilians, national security forces and peacekeepers in the DRC.
British High Commissioner to Malawi Holly Tett has also expressed sadness at the death of the Malawian peacekeepers.
She said: “Very sad to hear about the deaths of 4 brave Malawian soldiers deployed to DRC under Force Intervention Brigade protecting peace. These soldiers contributed to Malawi’s reputation for professionalism, discipline and courage in DRC. Condolences to their families and Malawi.”