Wed, 29 Mar 2023

UNITED NATIONS, Feb. 5 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has strongly condemned Sunday's attack on a helicopter of UN peacekeeping missions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), that left a South African peacekeeper dead and another severely injured.

The helicopter of the UN Organization Stabilization Mission in the DRC came under fire while travelling from Beni to Goma in the DRC's North Kivu province, Secretary-General spokesman Stephane Dujarric said in a statement on Sunday, adding the crew managed to land the helicopter in Goma.

According to the statement, Guterres recalled that "attacks against United Nations peacekeepers may constitute a war crime under international law," and called on the Congolese authorities "to investigate this heinous attack and swiftly bring those responsible to justice."

"The Secretary-General reaffirms that the United Nations, through his Special Representative in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, will continue to support the Congolese Government and people in their efforts to bring about peace and stability in the east of the country."

The UN chief expressed his deepest condolences to the family of the fallen peacekeeper and wished a speedy recovery to the injured, the statement said.

No group has claimed responsibility for the helicopter attack yet.

The North Kivu province, long plagued by insecurity and violence, has been an epicenter of intensive fighting for months between government troops and local armed groups.

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