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16 aid workers kidnapped by armed group in Congo

Congo Study Centre for the Promotion of Peace and Human Rights said on Monday that 16 Congolese aid workers were kidnapped by an armed group in the east of Congo.

The 14 researchers and two drivers from the Rural Development Centre, which supports farmers, were stopped Sunday at gunpoint by about 10 people, the human rights group said.

The group’s Director, Omar Kavotha, said that the kidnappers probably belonged to the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda, one of dozens of armed groups operating in eastern Congo.

The aid workers were kidnapped as they were returning from a research mission in Rutshuru area, near the Ugandan border.

Kidnappings for ransom have increased in the region, according to the rights group, adding that more than 100 such cases have been reported in the Rutshuru area over the past four months.


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