Italy’s ambassador to the Democratic Republic of Congo has been killed in an attack in the east of the country, its foreign ministry has said.

Luca Attanasio, 43, died in hospital on Monday after the United Nations convoy he was traveling in came under fire near Goma, a statement said. The convoy reportedly belonged to the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP). An Italian military police officer traveling with the envoy and a third person was also killed, reports say.

The attack is believed to have been an attempted kidnapping, according to officials at the nearby Virunga National Park.

It happened at around 10:15 local time (08:15 GMT) just north of Goma, the officials told Reuters news agency. It is not clear who was behind the attack, but many armed groups are known to operate in and around the park.

Mr Attanasio had represented Italy in the DR Congo since 2017. He joined the diplomatic service in 2003 and spent time in Morocco and Nigeria.

Source – BBC