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Gunfire Kills a Red Cross Worker Trying To Rescue an Injured Civilian During a Battle Between

November 25, 1997

Gunfire Kills a Red Cross Worker Trying To Rescue an Injured Civilian During a Battle Between Police and Rebels in the Republic of Congo

The victim, who was not identified, was killed Saturday as he went to rescue a civilian who had been wounded in the fighting, said Delphin Kibakidi, a spokesman for the local Red Cross organization.

Kibakidi said the Red Cross had no plans to change its operations in Brazzaville because of the incident.

``We will continue to help those that need us,″ he said, calling on authorities to bring the situation under control.

The new government of Gen. Denis Sassou-Nguesso has vowed to eliminate the private militias _ despite the fact that he came to power at the head of one such group, the Cobras. He has said he would create a ``true republican army.″

Some Cobras, however, are resisting the government’s Friday decree ordering militia members to turn in their weapons within 15 days.

Police have been patrolling the streets of Brazzaville since Saturday to collect _ and seize, if need be _ the weapons.

Police officials said Monday that 170 Kalashnikov rifles and more than 100 grenades, along with numerous military uniforms, were seized Saturday.

Sassou-Nguesso took office Oct. 23 after the Cobras ran President Pascal Lissouba out of the country.

The Cobras were just one of three main militias, which also included Lissouba’s Zulus and Bernard Kolelas’ Ninjas.

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