British tourists 'kidnapped' at Virunga wildlife park in Democratic Republic of Congo

A group of park rangers pause in front of a field post in Virunga National Park

A group of park rangers pause in front of a field post in Virunga National Park

One of the park wardens who accompanied the tourists was killed in this ambush, according to Joel Wengamulay, the Communication Director of ICC.

"The management of the Congolese Institute for the Conservation of Nature wishes to bring to the attention of the resident of Beni and its surroundings that it is forbidden to fell trees in the park", a statement read.

In the Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, unknown gunmen killed one of the guards of the Park and kidnapped the two tourists from the United Kingdom and their driver. "That would put their lives in danger".

Virunga is a Unesco world heritage site, covering 3,000 square miles on the Democratic Republic of Congo's border with Uganda and Rwanda.

It is located in DRC's North Kivu province, where armed groups are fighting for control of territorial and natural resources, and poaching is a major threat.

It is famously home to critically endangered mountain gorillas, and was the scene of a documentary on Netflix called Virunga.

The park has experienced an increase in violence in recent months.

Last year, a fifth of the park's southern sector was deforested owing to illegal charcoal production. One female park ranger was "wounded" and was taken to the hospital for treatment.

On April 9, six park staffers were killed in the deadliest known ambush of its kind in Virunga.

The source did not specify the nationality of those abducted but said their guard was seriously injured.

And in a separate incident a park ranger guarding a hydroelectric plant died in an attack by armed men.

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