Deadly Uganda clash blamed on Rwen­zu­ruru king’s mili­tia

The Star (Kenya) - - News | World -

At least 14 peo­ple have been killed in Uganda, in a bat­tle be­tween po­lice and mili­tia al­legedly linked to one of the coun­try’s tra­di­tional kings.

Mili­ti­a­men are re­ported to have at­tacked a po­lice post in the western town of Kas­ese, the home of the King of Rwen­zu­ruru, Charles Wes­ley Mum­bere.

Eight mili­tia and two po­lice of­fi­cers were among the dead.

A Ugan­dan gov­ern­ment spokesman ac­cused the mili­tia of seek­ing to break away from Uganda.

“These mili­ti­a­men have set up camps in the Rwen­zori moun­tains from where they train and come to at­tack gov­ern­ment in­stal­la­tions,” Sha­ban Ban­ta­riza said.

The king has de­nied any con­nec­tions with them. His Bakonzo com­mu­nity on the border with the Demo­cratic Repub­lic of Congo has long been at log­ger­heads with the dom­i­nant Toro king­dom in the re­gion.

Years of clashes ended in 1982 with an agree­ment for more lo­cal au­ton­omy and Pres­i­dent Yow­eri Mu­sev­eni of­fi­cially recog­nised the king­dom in 2009, but ten­sions have con­tin­ued to sim­mer.

Be­tween Fe­bru­ary and March this year, more than 50 peo­ple were killed in clashes be­tween se­cu­rity forces and rebels, ac­cord­ing to po­lice fig­ures.

/ FILE

A Ugan­dan sol­dier re­moves a burn­ing bar­ri­cade dur­ing clashes in Kam­pala, Uganda, on Fe­bru­ary 19

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