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The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General António Guterres:

The Secretary-General is outraged by a serious incident that took place this morning, 31 July, in Kasindi, North Kivu Province, on the border of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Uganda, in which military personnel of the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO) opened fire while returning to the Democratic Republic of the Congo from leave in their home country.

The Secretary-General is both saddened and dismayed by the loss of life and serious injuries sustained during this incident.  He expresses his deepest condolences to the affected families, the people of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Congolese Government, and wishes a speedy recovery to those injured.

The Secretary-General stresses in the strongest terms the need to establish accountability for these events.  He welcomes the decision of his Special Representative in the Democratic Republic of the Congo to detain MONUSCO personnel involved in the incident and to immediately open an investigation.  He notes that the United Nations has established contact with the country of origin of the concerned personnel, with a view to urgently initiating judicial proceedings with the participation of victims and witnesses so that appropriate sanctions can be handed down.

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