Bukavu – Four people were kidnapped from a truck belonging to an NGO in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s troubled east on Thursday, local sources said, days after three aid workers and a nurse were abducted in a neighbouring province.
The four were in the Virunga National Park travelling toward Goma in the North Kivu province when unidentified men stopped their pick-up truck, civil society leader Mambo Kawaya said.
They were then taken into the bush, he added.
Boniface Kagumya Chechire, the local mayor of Kibumba, confirmed the abduction, saying the identity of those taken was not known but that their truck belonged to an NGO.
“I am at the scene, our security services are conducting a search,” he told AFP by phone.
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Earlier on Thursday, the US aid organisation International Medical Corps said three of its Congolese employees were among four men kidnapped in the neighbouring South Kivu province.
The abduction happened on Tuesday in Fizi, when “unidentified armed men” stopped the vehicle in which the four were travelling, district administrator Jean de Dieu Selemani told AFP.
Three of those kidnapped worked for the International Medical Corps and the fourth was a nurse working for a clinic in Mulima, he said.
The non-profit confirmed that three of its employees with Congolese nationality had been kidnapped, but declined to give further details.
“The safety and security of our staff are our prime concern,” it said in an email to AFP.
South Kivu, North Kivu and Ituri provinces in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo are infested with armed groups, many of them a legacy of the 1996-97 and 1998-2003 Congo Wars.
Abductions targeting humanitarian workers are common.
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