More than 20 people were killed in an attack in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo on Friday, according to a local officer.
ADF militants attacked Lisasa village in Beni area(North Kivu) between 8pm and midnight on the evening of 30th October, as a local leader Kalunga Meso told a news agency over the phone.
According to local administrator Donat Kibwana from the Beni region of North Kivu province, the “early death toll” was 21. A local NGO named Ceoadho said in a statement that 15 of the 21 people killed were women.
In addition to the murders, a large number of people were taken hostage, a heath center was looted, houses set on fire and a church was dismantled.
ALLIED DEMOCRATIC FORCE
ADF is a rebel group that originated in 1989 with the aim of establishing an Islamic state. Initially, it was limited to western Uganda only but later expanded to the neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo. It was formed by Jamil Mukulu, a former catholic who later changed to Islam.
The ADF merged with another rebel group like the National Army for the Liberation of Uganda (NALU), the Allied Democratic Movement, the Uganda Muslim Liberation Army, and members of the Tablighi Jamaat movement.
The rebel militia group never took the blame for the raids. Several attacks by the ADF have also been claimed by the ISF, although United Nation’s experts have not yet found clear evidence of a link between the two groups.
ATTACKS BY ADF
The ADF carried out its first large attack on 13 November, 1996 in Kasese district, Uganda. It left 50 people killed and 25,000 people fled the towns.
In 1998 the rebel group attacked the Kichwamla Technical College. 80 students were killed and 80 more were kidnapped.
Between April 1999 to May 1999, ADF carried out 7 brutal attacks, killing 11 people and wounding 42.
In 2019, the Congolese militia launched a massive offensive against the rebel group in Beni territory of the North Kivu province. As a result, the rebel group deserted its bases, bifurcated into smaller and more mobile groups and attacked the citizens.
In an attack on 21st October, large number of prisoners fled from the Kangbayi central prison. The Allied democratic force was accused for the attack but Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant(ISIL) took the responsibility.
Friday’s attack comes only days after the ADF killed 19 inhabitants of Baeti village of North Kivu province on Wednesday evening. A church was set on fire along with 40 houses. ISIL again took the claim for the attack.