At least 39 people were killed and another 94 injured in a latest shooting attack in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) on Sept. 15, the UN Refugee Agency UNHCR said Tuesday in a statement, APA reports quoting Xinhua.
The UN agency said that the attack took place after Congolese soldiers fired live rounds at Burundian protestors in the eastern part of the country, many of whom UNHCR believes were refugees and asylum-seekers.
The protest, reported to be initially peaceful, allegedly started after a small group of Burundians were detained by Congolese authorities, creating fears they were going to be deported to Burundi.
According to UNHCR, the dead included Burundian men, women and one child. The incident also resulted in the death of one Congolese soldier, with six others wounded.
"This is a devastating tragedy. It should never have happened," said Filippo Grandi, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.
In a statement on Tuesday, he welcomed the announcement from Congolese officials to launch an inquiry into the incident and called for it to be detailed, saying that such an incident should never happen again.
UNHCR figures show that DRC hosts more than 43,700 refugees who have arrived from Burundi since 2015.