According to a statement from the Italian Foreign Ministry, their Congolese ambassador was killed in an attack on a UN convoy.

Unknowns have attacked one of the UN convoys, and the Italian ambassador to the Congo has also died in the attack, the Italian Foreign Ministry said on Monday. The ministry said the raid took place near the city of Goma in eastern Congo, with the aim of kidnapping and hostage-taking.

In addition to the ambassador, the Italian side mentions a dead man who, according to the international press, may be an Italian military police officer accompanying the ambassador. However, according to Congolese media, in addition to the ambassador, three people lost their lives, one of whom was his driver.

However, different information is circulating about which UN convoy the ambassador traveled to. According to the Italian Foreign Ministry, the ambassador was sitting in the car of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Congo (MONOSCO), however, Congolese media claim that he is in the procession column of the World Food Program (WFP).

Italian Ambassador Luca Attanasio was transported with life-threatening injuries after the attack to a local UN hospital, where he died of his injuries within hours, writes The Guardian. Italian Foreign Minister Luigi di Maio briefed his colleagues on what had happened at a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Brussels and then traveled home. As he said, the circumstances of the attack are still unknown.

Attanasio has been Head of Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo since 2017, and in 2019 he was appointed Ambassador. The identity of the attackers is obscured – for the time being – by the fact that several armed militias are patrolling the Congolese territory and the border between Rwanda and Uganda, any of which may be responsible for the attack.

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