UN, AU condemns DRC attack that killed Italian ambassador

Guterres called on the government of the DRC to swiftly investigate the heinous attack.

In Summary

• The secretary-general has expressed his full solidarity with the WFP colleagues and the entire United Nations team in DRC.

• ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said attacks on humanitarian or peacekeeping convoys may constitute crimes under the Rome Statute.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.
Image: FILE

The United Nations (UN) secretary general Antonio Guterres has expressed his deepest condolences to the families of the deceased, as well as to the governments of Italy and the DRC following an attack on Monday.

In a statement, Guterres called on the government of the DRC "to investigate swiftly this heinous targeting of a United Nations joint field mission and to bring the perpetrators to justice."

The secretary general expressed his full solidarity with the WFP colleagues and the entire United Nations team in DRC.

He made it clear that the UN would continue to support the DRC government and the people in their efforts to bring about peace and stability in the east of the country.

On Monday, Italy's ambassador to DRC Luca Attanasio and two other people were killed in an attack on a United Nations convoy in eastern Congo.

The Italian ambassador and a military policeman traveling with him were killed, the Italian foreign ministry said in a statement.

The acting head of the UN peacekeeping mission in DRC, MONUSCO, said in a statement that he was "devastated" by news of the attack.

Deputy Special Representative David McLachlan-Karr strongly condemned the assault and declared that "those responsible...must be identified and prosecuted with the utmost determination."

Africa Union Commission (AUC) chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat has also condemned the attack.

According to the ministry website, Attanasio had been Italy's head of mission in Kinshasa since 2017 and was made ambassador in 2019. 

International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor Fatou Bensouda also condemned the attack, saying that attacks on humanitarian or peacekeeping convoys may constitute crimes under Rome Statute.

“I call on the authorities to fully investigate this incident and bring those responsible to justice,” Bensouda said.