Five soldiers were killed and another five were wounded after Cooperative for the Development of Congo (CODECO) attacked an Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo (FARDC) position in the Ezekere area of Ituri province on Tuesday, November 3. The rebels were reportedly attempting to recapture a position which the FARDC had regained control over last month. The attack was repelled as reinforcements arrived from the town of Bunia. No CODECO casualties have been confirmed.
Further fighting was reported in nearby Bedu on Wednesday, November 4, but details on the latest incident have yet to be substantiated.
Attacks by armed groups are expected to continue across the region over the near and medium term. Security operations are likely in the area in the coming days.
Dozens of attacks on communities in Ituri province have been attributed to CODECO since violence in the region flared in March 2020. The clashes have been linked to long-simmering tensions between the Lendu ethnic group, from which CODECO is drawn, and local Hema traders. However, security forces' capabilities in Ituri, as elsewhere in the DRC's unstable eastern provinces, remain limited, and the government has so far struggled to stem the violence.
Those in Ituri province are advised to remain vigilant for rebel and militia activity, monitor developments, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities and their home governments.
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