World News

Italian Ambassador Killed in Congo

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is a country in central Africa. Despite being the second-largest country in Africa, the DRC is the second poorest country in the world.

Most recently, the Italian ambassador to the Democratic Republic of Congo, Luca Attanasio, has been killed in Goma, in the capital of North Kivu province in the eastern DRC. Attanasio was killed alongside an Italian soldier after their car was attacked as they traveled in a United Nations convoy on the eastern side of the country.

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) said a delegation was on a mission trip to visit and support one of their many school feeding programs in Rutshuru when they came under attack. The delegation group left Goma at approximately 9:00 AM, local time, on a Monday. An armed group stopped the vehicles around 10:15 AM, forcing all the passengers to get out of the vehicles. One of the drivers of the vehicles was killed around this time. The remaining six passengers were then taken by force at gunpoint into the surrounding bush where shots were then said to be fired. During the shooting, the Italian Ambassador, Luca Attanasio, and his security soldier Vittorio Iacovacci were severely injured. Due to critical injuries, they both died. The ministry stated, “It is with deep sorrow that the Farnesina confirms the death, today in Goma, of the Ambassador of Italy to the Democratic Republic of Congo Luca Attanasio and of a soldier from the Carabinieri,” the ministry said in a statement.

The Italian foreign minister, Luigi Di Maio, said Wednesday the country had sent a team to eastern DRC to investigate the incident. The reason for the incident is still said to be unclear due to the area being full of different armed groups and different ethnicities. Therefore, it is difficult to attribute this attack to one of the many groups the DRC has, so it is still too early to make conclusions on who the attackers were and why they attacked.

 

The United Nations peacekeepers guard the area where the convoy was attacked. Source: VOA News.

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