Gunmen kill two people in DR Congo’s Virunga National Park

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VIRUNGA NATIONAL PARK, NORTH KIVU, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO - 2016/05/17: The insignia (in French) of the rangers working in the Virunga National Park. The parc, created in 1925 under the name of Albert National Park, has a 7,800 km2 superficy and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The park employs around 500 rangers who fight against poachers and illegal charcoal producers. (Photo by Thierry Falise/LightRocket via Getty Images)
The insignia (in French) of the rangers working in the Virunga National Park. The park, created in 1925 under the name of Albert National Park, has a 7,800 km2 superficy and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The park employs around 500 rangers who fight against poachers and illegal charcoal producers. (Photo by Thierry Falise/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Two people were killed and another one injured as they crossed Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Nord Kivu province.

A statement by the authorities said the convoy in which the victims were riding was ambushed during the night of November 13-14 on the national highway near Ngwenda village in Rutshuru territory.

“Our thoughts are with Ranger Kambale’s family as well as family of the truck driver during this very difficult time. We are eternally grateful for the valiant work of ICCN rangers who work tirelessly to protect Virunga National Park, its unique wildlife and its neighbouring communities,” the statement read in part.

Virunga, Africa’s oldest national park, is home to a world-famous population of mountain gorillas. However, in recent times, it has been hit by rising instability and violence.

In March, a ranger was killed in an attack in the park’s troubled Central sector. The park said the death toll of park rangers in the line of duty then stood at 176.

Virunga reopened in February this year following a security review after its closure for nine months in the wake of the killing of nine people, including a ranger.

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