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Six gorilla rangers killed in latest Virunga ambush

Six more gorilla rangers have lost their lives while patrolling the Virunga National Park

Six rangers have been killed in an ambush in the Virunga National Park, home to half the world’s remaining mountain gorillas.

Several other rangers were injured in the incident, the latest in a long line of attacks carried out by militia fighting for control of the rich natural resources found within the lush Congolese rainforests. According to the Virunga National Park, the ambush occurred in the Nyamitwitwi region, almost right in the centre of the vast 3,000 square mile reserve on Sunday afternoon.

Jillian Miller, Director of the Gorilla Organization, says: “This is a tragic start to 2021. Last year, we celebrated the arrival of a record number of mountain gorilla babies. However, this attack shows that we cannot rest for one minute. Gorillas and their precious habitat remain in grave danger, and we are enormously grateful to the brave men and women who work on the frontline protecting them, often paying the ultimate price.”

In all, more than 200 rangers have been killed in the Virunga National Park, the oldest of all Africa’s national parks. In April last year, 12 lost their lives in an ambush also carried out by one of the many militia groups vying for control of the territory.