MONUC: Senegalese peacekeeper Thiaw Mamadou shot and killed by govt forces (FARDC) in Goma, DR Congo - 3 suspects arrested
A Senegalese peacekeeper was killed on Friday in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo), said the UN peacekeeping mission here on Monday.+ + +
Thiaw Mamadou, 24 years old, was shot dead by government forces (FARDC) in the eastern Congolese city of Goma, according to the United Nations Organization Mission in the DR Congo (MONUC).
Three soldiers have been arrested on suspicion of attacking and killing Mamadou, who performed peacekeeping duty in many regions of the province of North Kivu.
No further details about Mamadou's death were revealed by MONUC, which is currently the largest UN peacekeeping force in the world, with 17,000 troops and police.
At the mourning ceremony of Mamadou, MONUC Force Commander Lieutenant-General Babacar Gaye spoke highly of the sacrifice made by the UN peacekeepers, or "blue helmets."
Gaye said that the peacekeepers will safeguard peace of the DR Congo with their blood and lives.
He said he hoped the country would resume peace and stability at an early date.
Fighting in the province of North Kivu between FARDC and a militia led by former general Laurent Nkunda has displaced as many as 253,000 Congolese since late August.
FORCES AROUND GOMA
CNDP: Gen Nkunda's Tutsi rebels - 6,000 fighters
FDLR: Rwandan Hutus - 6,000-7,000
Mai Mai: pro-government militia - 3,500
Monuc: UN peacekeepers - 6,000 in North Kivu, including about 1,000 in Goma (17,000 nationwide)
DRC army - 90,000 (nationwide)
Source: UN, military experts/BBC
Congolese government soldiers sit in the rain at the frontline in E. Congo
Photo: Congolese government soldiers sit in the rain at the frontline near Kibati, north of Goma in eastern Congo, November 12, 2008. Two government soldiers, both shot through the head, were killed in a sharp exchange of artillery, mortar, rocket and machine gun fire late on Tuesday a few kilometres from a refugee camp at Kibati sheltering 80,000 civilians displaced by violence. This is the tense frontline in the simmering war in Democratic Republic of Congo's North Kivu province, where Tutsi rebels and government troops face each other just 200 metres apart from positions in the verdant bush and fields. Reuters/Finbarr O'Reilly (DRC)
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