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Four hurt in bomb blast in busy market in east Congo - police

Four people were hurt when a bomb exploded at a busy market in the city of Beni in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo on Saturday, police said, days after the US embassy in the capital Kinshasa warned of a possible attack.

Local police said they were looking for the suspected bomber after the blast in Beni, which is in a region where Congolese and Ugandan forces have launched a campaign against suspected Islamists.

"We call on the population to be calm and especially vigilant," said Beni city police spokesperson Nasson Murara.

Police tended to casualties at the market before taking them to a local police hospital, a Reuters journalist on the scene said.

Frank Kasisa, the attending physician at Beni's police hospital, said four people were in stable condition after being injured in the blast. He confirmed no one had been killed.

Stéphanie Kahambu, who has a shop inside the market, said the market had been crowded before the explosion.

"We heard a bomb explode, and everyone fled in different directions," Kahambu said. "It's really sad because I saw four people who were seriously injured."

The US embassy in Kinshasa said on Tuesday that it believed "terrorist attacks" were planned in Beni "in the near future," and warned citizens against traveling there.

Beni has seen several recent bombings that authorities have blamed on the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), a Ugandan militant group that has pledged allegiance to the Islamic State.



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