US urges DR Congo to protect UN peacekeepers


The United States has urged the Democratic Republic of Congo to protect UN peacekeepers after deadly anti-UN protests in the country’s volatile east claimed at least 19 lives.

Three peacekeepers, from India and Morocco, were killed on Tuesday in an attack on a base of the UN mission in DRC, known as MONUSCO, which many local people resent as having failed to stop decades of armed conflict.

“We call on the national and local authorities in the [DR Congo] to ensure the protection of Monusco sites and personnel and for protesters to express their sentiments peacefully,” State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters on Thursday.

The US said attacks against UN personnel and their sites was against international law and appreciated DR Congo government’s “commitment to investigating these events”.

Price noted that Monusco serves “a critical role in fostering peace and security, protecting civilians, and facilitating delivery of humanitarian assistance”.

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