Kampala – Uganda’s Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) rebels killed five people and wounded four others in an ambush on a civilian lorry in the remote north of the country, the military said on Sunday.
The attack took place on Friday as the members of a local dance troupe drove to a function in eastern Pader district, said Lieutenant Chris Magezi, Uganda’s northern army spokesperson
“Five civilians were killed while four others were injured, some critically. After ambushing the lorry between Patongo and Adilang (villages) …the thugs looted the vehicle and set it on fire before disappearing in the bush,” he said.
The military could not confirmed reports from local residents who said as many as nine people may have died in the attack, 350 km north of the capital Kampala.
The LRA, which has no clear political aims, has terrorised isolated northern communities for 19 years, uprooting more than 1,6-million people and triggering a humanitarian crisis.
Led by self-proclaimed mystic Joseph Kony, the cult-like group is notorious for massacring civilians, mutilating survivors and kidnapping more than 20 000 children who are forced to serve as fighters, porters and sex slaves.
Last month, the International Criminal Court unveiled its first arrest warrants for Kony and his top LRA deputies.
Magezi said about 10 rebel fighters carried out the latest ambush, adding that troops later attacked them south of Patongo.
“Two rebels were killed and two sub-machine guns were recovered, (along with looted items),” he said in a statement.