Unidentified armed assailants have killed at least eight people and wounded 18 others during an overnight attack in northern Rwanda near the border with Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
According to Rwanda police, the attack took place on Friday in Musanze district’s Kinigi sector, a gateway to Volcanoes National Park where endangered mountain gorillas live.
“Those criminals killed eight people, including six who were killed using traditional weapons and two who were shot dead,” John Bosco Kabera, police spokesman, said in a statement on Saturday.
Adding that, “Eighteen people were injured and are being attended by doctors.”
Musanze district’s Kinigi sector attracts tourists because of its Volcanoes National Park and its mountain gorillas. Rwanda security organs contained the situation and order was restored.
“RDB (Rwanda Development Board) informs the general public that tourism services continue to operate normally in Volcanoes National Park and all other national parks and attractions in Rwanda,” read a statement from RDB.
“This follows security incidents where unidentified gunmen attacked local communities in Kinigi Sector,” the statement added.
It was however not clear where the attackers came from but Rwanda has in the past seen incursions by fighters from the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR) armed group from their bases in eastern DRC.
RDB reiterates that hundreds of thousands of guests have visited Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park for gorilla tracking over the past 20 years without incident and that safety and security are the hallmark of the Rwandan tourism experience, and will continue to be the highest priority.