Beni, January 18th, 2023 (CPA).- A seriously injured suicide bomber was detected among the victims of the bomb attack on Sunday January 15th in a church in Kasindi, in Democratic Republic of Congo, on the border with the Uganda, CPA learned on Tuesday from a military source.
« Apart from the suspected Kenyan arrested on the same Sunday, the day of the tragedy, we detected a seriously injured suicide bomber among the injured victims that we identified during the explosion of a bomb in the 8th CEPAC church in Kasindi », announced to the Beni press, late in the evening of Monday, Captain Antony Muwalushay, spokesman for Sokola1 Grand Nord operations.
« We (the FARDC) have taken charge of this suicide bomber who is seriously injured, by transporting him to Beni for appropriate care, so that he can provide us with useful information in relation to this attack », said the captain, in the presence of the military governor of Nord Kivu, Major General Constant Ndima, who descended on the scene of the tragedy. He also announced that the toll has been revised upwards, fourteen dead, four victims having succumbed to their injuries, on the side of the injured. « So far 14 people have been killed and more than 70 others injured in the explosion, » said the FARDC/Beni captain, spokesman, following the provisional report presented on Sunday: ten compatriots killed and 39 injured. Several civilians, among them a baby, teenagers and adults, were killed when a bomb exploded in a church in Kasindi on Sunday. « Among those killed, there is a baby of at least two years old and teenagers », testified Constantin Paluku, a Christian present at the time of the explosion. In photos and videos shared by Christians present, we can see traces of blood and motionless bodies in a pile of debris. While motorcyclists were busy carrying bloody wounded. The military governor of Nord Kivu, General Constant Ndima, took certain measures during his stay in Kasindi, including the reinforcement of the military personnel of this city. He also took the decision to involve the population in all intelligence efforts, in order to dismantle other suicide bombers who are hiding, believing that the danger has not yet been eliminated. On Twitter, Minister Patrick Muyaya, spokesperson for the Congolese government accused the terrorists of the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) group of having organized this attack.
The army believes that this bomb attack took place because the Congolese and Ugandan armies are inflicting setbacks on the ADF in depth. Before this attack in a Pentecostal church, an IED had exploded on June 27th, 2021; two homemade bombs had exploded in Beni-city, including one inside a Catholic church. The evening of the same day, still in Beni, a suicide bomber was killed in the explosion of the machine he was carrying. This Sunday, the Congolese army announced that it had arrested a suspect of Kenyan nationality. Classified as a terrorist group by the United States and DRC, the ADF are on their arrival in eastern Congo, Ugandan rebels opposed to President Yoweri Museveni. But since 2017, they have been massacring Congolese civilians despite having taken root in the communities of these corners. Among these terrorists, the FARDC arrest people of several nationalities including Ugandans, Congolese, Rwandans, Kenyans, Tanzanians, and even Arabs. The Congolese and Ugandan armies have launched operations against ADF positions which they have dislodged from several strongholds.
The destabilized provinces of Nord Kivu and Ituri have been under a state of siege since May 2021.