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Lake Kivu tragedy: Bodies of 15 Congolese recovered

Rwandan officials on Saturday recovered 15 bodies on the shores of Lake Kivu after a deadly boat accident on the Congolese side of the lake earlier this week.The announcement comes after authorities in North Kivu provice from Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo said that at least 142 passengers were still missing from a passenger boat that sank.

The bodies were found on the shores of the lake on the Rwandan side, Janvier Murenzi, the Mayor of Rubavu, a district in North Western Rwanda on the border with DR Congo told APA.

“Five lifeboats have been deployed on the lake to search for other bodies,” he said.

According to him, all recovered  15 bodies were repatriated to Goma (North Kivu) where they will be buried in a local cemetery by close relatives of deceased passengers.

Deadly boat accidents are common in Congo, which has few tarred roads across its vast, forested interior and where vessels are frequently loaded well beyond their capacity.

The boat, a smaller type known as a pirogue, had set out from neighbouring North Kivu province on Monday and foundered on the lake near South Kivu’s Kalehe territory.

It was unclear who operated the boat and exactly how it sank, though overcrowding is often a cause. 

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