Mountain Gorilla Killed by Militia
June 2001

A male gorilla in the Volcano National Park was cooked and half eaten by Hutu militiamen at the beginning of June. It is possible that a second one met a similar fate. The two gorillas are believed to be lone silverback males. The militiamen had infiltrated the park from neighbouring Congo to escape a relentless Rwandan army crackdown on their bases in Congo. The Rwandan rebels shot, grilled and ate the gorillas when the park was surrounded by the army and the rebels were unable to get food. Although the killing and eating of monkeys, chimpanzees and lowland gorillas is common in Congo and other parts of Central Africa, it is rare in Rwanda and Uganda. After this incident the army deployed troops around the gorilla groups and around the park. Soldiers accompany tourists up the mountains and others line the routes to gorilla feeding grounds.

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