Alleged ISIS suicide bomber detonates himself at packed restaurant on Christmas day in Congo killing at least 6

At least six people have died in a suicide bomb attack allegedly carried out by ISIS backed militants on a crowded restaurant in the eastern city of Beni, Congo on Christmas day.

 

Officials in the Democratic Republic of Congo say a suicide bomber of the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), a militant group said to be linked to the Islamic State (IS) blew himself up at the entrance of a packed restaurant of people celebrating Christmas killing himself and five other people.

Another 13 people were injured. Police say they prevented the bomber from entering the building, then he blew himself at the entrance .

More than 30 people were celebrating Christmas at the In Box restaurant when the bomb went off, two witnesses told AFP news agency.

Children and local officials were reportedly in the restaurant at the time.

“I was sitting there,” local radio presenter Nicolas Ekila told AFP. “There was a motorbike parked there. Suddenly the motorbike took off, then there was a deafening noise.”

There have been frequent clashes in Beni between the army and Islamists in recent weeks.

In November, Congolese and Ugandan forces began a joint operation against the ADF in an attempt to end a series of brutal attacks as Ugandan authorities say the group is behind a series of recent attacks in the country.

 

The militant group was formed in the 1990s by Ugandans disgruntled with the government’s treatment of Muslims, but now also operates in DR Congo.

The group has been blamed for thousands of civilian killings over the past decade, including in attacks on Christians and in March the US put the ADF on its list of terror groups linked to IS.