NAIROBI, Kenya – At least six rangers have been ambushed and killed in Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, park officials said, part of a wave of violence that hit the oldest of Africa. park and continues to endanger the home of about a third of the world’s mountain gorillas.
Officials attributed Sunday’s attack to Mai-Mai fighters, a generic name for a weakly affiliated group of local militias fighting for power and resources in eastern Congo.
The park has for years been the scene of repeated attacks by rebels and militias, as well as poachers and loggers, resulting in the murder of hundreds of rangers.
The latest assault comes barely a year after attackers killed 17 people, including 12 rangers, in the park. Emmanuel de Merode, the director of the park, was shot and wounded in 2014, and tourists were kidnapped while visiting the national park.