Rebels backed by the Islamic State group have killed two Ugandan soldiers in an attack that also left two civilians and a suspected assailant dead in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, authorities said Saturday.
Two truck drivers, a Kenyan, and a Congolese, were shot dead Friday night by IS-affiliated Allied Democratic Forces at a car park in Kasindi, Beni territory, said Barthelemy Kambale, a North Kivu provincial civil servant.
A fifth body was assumed to be an assailant, he told AFP.
The Islamic State group claimed the attack in a statement posted to the messaging app Telegram on Saturday evening.
Kasindi was the scene of a Pentecostal church bombing blamed on the ADF that killed about 15 people in January, and for which IS claimed responsibility.
Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo launched a joint offensive in 2021 against the ADF to drive the militants out of their Congolese strongholds, but attacks have continued.
Originally fielding mainly Muslim Ugandan rebels, the ADF gained a foothold in the region in the 1990s and are accused of killing thousands of civilians.
"The ADF enemy arrived about 22:30 (2030 GMT), our forces blocked the road against the rebels," said Kambale, adding that "two Ugandan soldiers died during the operation."
Three vehicles were burned out, he said.
"People are angry, they burned the body of a dead ADF," said a local civil society representative, asking not to be named.
Twenty-six civilians died overnight Monday into Tuesday in a massacre attributed to the ADF near Oicha town, also in Beni territory, which has been the epicenter of the years-long rampage by the ADF, called Islamic State Central Africa Province by IS.
In Uganda, police said the ADF were behind the killing of a couple on their honeymoon and their safari guide in the nation's Queen Elizabeth National Park on October 17. IS claimed responsibility for the attack.
Numerous militia groups and rebels hold sway in eastern DRC despite the presence of peacekeepers.