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12/04/2021 DRC (International Christian Concern) –According to DRC’s army, a joint operation with Uganda’s military allowed 27 hostages to escape last week, after being held captive by the Allied Democratic Forces, (ADF), rebel group.

An AFP report transcribed the army’s FARDC-FM radio interview with three of the former hostages.

“At around 6 am, we heard the bombs,” said Paluku Makombozi, one of the escapees who overheard a rebel say it was Uganda bombing them. “We dispersed and, thank God, we managed to find out way to the way to the (DRC) army camp.” 

The ADF terror group originated in Western Uganda, and have since moved the majority of their operations across the border into DRC’s North Kivu and Ituri provinces. An affiliate of ISIS, the group regularly conducts attacks in the Christian dominated country, frequently killing, kidnapping, and displacing Christians.

Recently, ADF conducted four bomb attacks in Uganda’s capital of Kampala, prompting the country’s military to collaborate with forces combating the insurgency in the DRC.

Another former hostage, Tanzanian driver Selemani Hassan, reported that he was abducted on November 5th while on his way to the DRC. “They tried to convince us to convert to Islam,” he said of the ADF, adding that the day he was able to escape, “we saw drones and then the bombing started… They scattered, and I escaped too.”

Josephine Mateso, who had been at a women’s ADF camp for over two months, said that “The woman in charge would tell us she wished for the whole world to be Muslim.”

The DRC  was ranked 40th on the 2021 Open Doors World Watch List for Christian persecution. “These predominantly Christian communities are attacked by an Islamic extremist group with a clear Islamic expansionist agenda,” Open Doors spokesperson Illia Djadi stated in reference to the rebel group.

Please pray for the end of the ADF terrorist group, and for the Lord to soften the hearts of militants, who all too often are children forced to partake in heinous acts of violence. Please also pray for those who have been victims of terrorism, for the Lord to heal them and strengthen the church amidst persecution.

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