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Cattle-rustlers kill 76 people from rival tribe in northeast Uganda

June 2, 1997

KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) _ Cattle-rustlers killed 76 people from a rival tribe, including 50 children, in remote northeastern Uganda, a state newspaper reported today.

Warriors from the Karamojong tribe attacked rival settlements near Amudat on Wednesday, killing people and stealing 366 head of cattle, the New Vision daily said. Amudat is on the border of Kenya, 190 miles northeast of Kampala.

Among the dead were 50 children _ 36 of them girls, the newspaper said.

No further details on the attack were available. Ugandan police spokesman Eric Naigambi said an investigation was underway.

``The raiders resorted to killing any soul in sight,″ the daily quoted the local chief, Michael Chosey, as saying. Chosey said the dead included two blind men and 50 children between the ages of 2 and 15.

Cattle-rustling among the Karamojong, and between the Karamojong and Turkana in neighboring Kenya, has been a way of life for decades in the arid east.

But in the past, few were killed because only spears and bows and arrows were used. The easy availability of automatic weapons from war zones in Sudan and Somalia has changed the nature of cattle theft.

On Feb. 25, 59 people were killed during a cattle raid in the region.

The government has tried without success to disarm the Karamojong, who have terrorized neighboring tribes for years.

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