Six people were killed on Monday when protesters stormed the headquarters of the UN mission in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Protesters violently broke into buildings in the city of Goma, capital of North Kivu province, and destroyed or stole furniture, eyewitnesses told the German news agency DPA. Security forces responded with tear gas and gunshots, and six people were killed.
According to the North Kivu police, the attackers were criminals who misused the demonstrations against the presence of UN peacekeepers in Congo. The Congolese government and the UN mission, MONUSCO, have condemned the attack on the UN headquarters in Goma.
Civil society organizations and President Felix Tshisekedi’s party had called for the demonstrations in Goma after the president of the Congolese Senate asked the UN mission, MONUSCO, to leave Congo in mid-July.
The mission, which has been stationed in the DRC for more than 20 years, is the largest peacekeeping operation in the world.
According to the United States, about 130 armed groups are active in the Central African country, many of them seeking control over the DRC’s valuable resources, which include copper, cobalt, gold and diamonds.
Congo has about 90 million inhabitants.