Bethany Christian Graduate confirmed dead in Congo

(J. Tyler Klassen/Elkhart Truth)

BENI, Congo (AP) — The latest on the discovery of the bodies of an American and a Swedish U.N. expert and their interpreter in Congo (all times local):

12:45 a.m.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres says the world body will conduct an inquiry into the deaths of two U.N. experts whose bodies have been found in Congo.

Guterres says in a Tuesday statement that the cause of death for Michael Sharp of the United States and Zaida Catalan of Sweden hasn’t yet been determined.

The two and interpreter Betu Tshintela had vanished March 12 with their drivers in Congo’s Central Kasai province. The experts were looking into recent violence there.

The bodies of the three were found Monday. Congolese authorities say their identities were confirmed Tuesday.

Sharp graduated from Bethany Christian Schools in Goshen.

Guterres says the experts “lost their lives seeking to understand the causes of conflict and insecurity” in Congo, so as to help bring peace to its people.


10:30 p.m.

Congolese authorities say the bodies of an American and a Swedish U.N. expert and their interpreter have been found in the Central Kasai region where they recently disappeared.

Police inspector general Charles Bisengimana said Tuesday the bodies of the two U.N. experts were identified after being found Monday.

Government spokesman Lambert Mende says tests confirm the bodies are the experts and their local interpreter.

Michael Sharp of the U.S., Zaida Catalan of Sweden and interpreter Betu Tshintela disappeared March 12 with their drivers while looking into alleged human rights violations by the army and local militia groups.


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