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Italy condemns killing of officials in DR Congo


The Italian Foreign Minister, Luigi Di Maio, has described as cowardly, the killing of Italy’s Ambassador to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Luca Attanasio, and Carabiniere police officer Vittorio Iacovacci.

According to a local media report on Wednesday, the minister also said that Italy had requested a formal investigation of the incident by the UN and the World Food Programme (WFP).

On Monday, Attanasio (43) and Iacovacci (30), accompanied by a Congolese driver, Mustapha Milambo, were killed while on their way from Goma to Rutshuru in the east of DRC to inspect a UN WFP school feeding programme, ANSA news portal said.

“We have formally asked the UN and the WFP to open an investigation that clarifies what happened, the reasons behind the security provisions used, and who was responsible for these decisions,’’ Di Maio said in his report to the parliament as quoted by ANSA news.

He also noted that a team from Italian special operations group, ROS, arrived in DR Congo to gather evidence needed for an investigation by prosecutors in Rome.

Other investigative missions are to follow, Di Maio was quoted as saying.

The DRC Government has blamed the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda , a Rwandan rebel group, for the attack.

According to the media, the two Italian officials were killed in a targeted attack.

It ruled out the possibility of friendly fire from Congolese security forces as the cause of deaths.

Autopsies of the bodies were scheduled for Wednesday.