The apostolic nuncio in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Luis Mariano Montemayor, traveled to a shantytown near Rwangoma, in North Kivu, where an Islamist group killed more than 70 civilians.
This is the worst massacre that has taken place in this country since the conflict broke out in 2014.
MSGR. LUIS MARIANO MONTEMAYOR
Apostolic nuncio in the Democratic Republic of the Congo
"I thought I could not postpone this visit anymore, to show my solidarity with the victims, the most affected people, the people of Beni. I have just prayed for the victims, for reconciliation and for peace.”
As soon as he learned about the tragedy, the Pope spoke harshly against violence and asked for peace in this highly unstable country.
"I'm struck once again in hearing the news of the massacres that have long been perpetrating a shameful silence, without even calling our attention. Unfortunately, these victims form a part of the many innocent lives that have no influence on world opinion.”
The civil conflict remains unresolved in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Hundreds of civilians have been kidnapped or murdered. The death toll is now at 700 casualties.
MAMAN SAMBO SIDIKOU
MONUSCO Special Representative
"We are counting dead people every two or three months, and this cannot continue.”
The Congolese government and the UN Mission point fingers at the Allied Democratic Forces, a Muslim rebel group that opposes the President of Uganda, Yoweri Museveni, since 1995.