The Italian Ambassador to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Luca Attanasio, has been murdered this monday in an armed attack against a UN convoy in that country, sources from the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs reported.
“With deep regret, La Farnesina (Ministry of Foreign Affairs) confirms the death, today in Goma, of the Italian ambassador to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Luca Attanasio, and a carabinero, “the note reads.
The ambassador and the carabinero traveled aboard a convoy of the mission of the United Nations stabilization organization in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO), according to the same sources.
The Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Luigi Di Maio, expressed his “immense pain” after hearing the news while he was in a meeting of foreign ministers of the European Union in Brussels.
“I have learned with great consternation and immense pain of the death today of our ambassador in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and of a policeman. Two state servants who have been violently murdered in the line of duty, “the head of Italian diplomacy said in a note.
Di Maio added that “the circumstances of this brutal attack are not yet known and no effort will be spared to clarify what happened. “
“Pain and anguish over the death of Ambassador Luca Attanasio and the policeman in an armed attack on the convoy of the international mission of the United Nations World Food Program. Solidarity and closeness with the families of the victims,” he said, for his part, the president of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Chamber of Deputies, Piero Fassino.
The northeast of the DRC has been mired in a long conflict for years fueled by dozens of armed groups national and foreign rebels, despite the presence of the Congolese Army and the forces of the United Nations Mission, which has more than 15,000 troops deployed in the country.