The civilian death toll from what it calls a massacre by the March 23 movement, known as M23 rebel group, has risen to 272, said the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The increased death toll was announced at a press briefing Monday in Kinshasa by Minister of Industry and former governor of North Kivu province, Julien Paluku.
The Congolese army last week accused the March 23 movement rebels of killing at least 50 civilians in North Kivu’s Kishishe village. The rebel group rejected these accusations, and claimed that eight civilians were killed in the village by "stray bullets" on 29 November.
The government later increased the estimate to more than 100.
It is believed that all of the fatalities were civilians, 17 of which are believed to be children.
The March 23 movement, or M23, is a predominantly Congolese Tutsi rebel group that was dormant for years. It took up arms again in November last year and seized the town of Bunagana on the border with Uganda in June. After a brief period of calm, it went on the offensive again in October.
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