Ugandan troops have killed a top bodyguard of Lord's Resistance Army leader Joseph Kony.
A Ugandan army official said Monday that the rebel, known as Brigadier Binani, was killed Friday during a firefight in the eastern part of the Central African Republic, near South Sudan.
Army spokesman Felix Kulayigye said Ugandan troops were deployed to the area after receiving intelligence that a group of LRA rebels was there.
Kulayigye said in addition to being Kony's top bodyguard, Binani was responsible for logistics, food collection and abductions for the rebel group. He said although no one knows for sure where Kony is hiding, finding Binani means Ugandan forces are on the right track.
Ugandan troops have been working as part of an African Union force, with the help of U.S. military advisers, to hunt Kony and other LRA members.
The LRA, which originated in northern Uganda, is accused of killing, kidnapping and mutilating tens of thousands of people across central Africa over the past 25 years. Officials now believe the group is down to about 250 rebels and is hiding somewhere in the jungles close to where the borders of Central African Republic, South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo meet.
Kony is wanted by the International Criminal Court for war crimes and crimes against humanity.