BEIJING (1) – A gun attack in a mining space within the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has killed three Chinese nationals, China’s official Xinhua information company reported on Monday, citing the Chinese embassy within the mineral-rich central African nation.

The attack happened on Saturday within the northeastern province of Ituri, which borders Uganda and South Sudan, Xinhua mentioned, with out naming the mine in query or the corporate working it. “Three Chinese residents had been sadly killed,” it added.

The DRC is the world’s greatest producer of mined cobalt – a key ingredient in batteries for electrical automobiles – and one among Africa’s greatest copper producers, though its key copper-cobalt producing area is within the southwest, removed from the positioning of the attack.

The nation has attracted billions of {dollars} in funding from Chinese miners in recent times regardless of safety dangers. Canadian gold miner Banro, which owns mines in Maniema, a DRC province south of Ituri, suspended operations final yr after a number of of its mines had been overrun by armed rebels.

The Chinese embassy has requested the Congolese authorities to “take efficient measures to guard the lives and property of Chinese residents” within the DRC, in addition to to expedite an investigation into the killings, Xinhua mentioned, noting that the embassy had repeatedly suggested Chinese residents in opposition to journey to Ituri because of the presence of armed teams.

The embassy didn’t instantly reply to an e-mailed request for touch upon Monday, a public vacation in China.

Reporting by Tom Daly; further reporting by Helen Reid in Johannesburg; Enhancing by Raju Gopalakrishnan

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