The Ugandan military have rescued three of the six students who were kidnapped by Islamist fighters when they stormed a school in the west of the country last week and massacred 42 people, mostly young students, the army says.
“There were six students kidnapped and three have so far been rescued,” said military spokesman Felix Kulayigye.
A woman and two children who had been kidnapped outside the school was also rescued, while two militants were killed and two guns captured, Kulayigye said.
On Friday night a group of fighters from the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), a group linked to Islamic State, stormed the Lhubirira Secondary School in Mpondwe on Uganda’s border with the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The militiamen entered a boys’ dormitory, shot at the children and set the building on fire, incinerating nearly everyone in it. They then entered a girls’ dormitory and killed them with machetes.
Most of the bodies recovered from the boys’ dormitory were burnt beyond recognition and authorities are using DNA tests to identify them.
ADF, formerly a Ugandan rebel group, operates in the jungles of eastern Congo and has over the past two decades been blamed for killings of civilians there.
The group has also sometimes carried out attacks in Uganda including bombings at a police station and near the parliament building in the Ugandan capital in 2021.