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Three Red Cross workers kidnapped in DRC by suspected rebels

Three Red Cross workers kidnapped in DRC by suspected rebels

Democratic Republic Of Congo

Three Red Cross staff members have been kidnapped in eastern Congo in an attack by suspected rebels.

The abductions were confirmed on Tuesday in a tweet from the Red Cross’s Director of Operations, Dominik Stillhart.

“We’re doing everything we can to bring them back home safely,” he said.

The Congo-based Centre of Studies for the Promotion of Peace, Democracy and Human Rights said the three abducted staff were drivers from Goma, east of the country.

It said their vehicles were abandoned at the site of the kidnappings.

The centre said the culprits were believed to be members of the Rwandan rebel group, Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR). The group consist of former soldiers and Hutu militiamen behind Rwanda’s 1994 genocide.

The rebel group, which has waged wars against other armed groups and the government, is thought to be at the heart of instability in the region.

Members had announced they want to return to Rwanda but the U.N. peacekeeping mission has said the group’s goal is to overthrow the Rwandan government.

The United Nations had in January said a spike in kidnappings and insecurity had made it difficult to provide humanitarian aid.

Resource-rich eastern Democratic Republic of Congo has suffered from instability since millions were killed in regional wars in 1996 and 2003, mostly from hunger and disease, and armed groups have continued to remain in the area.

Reuters