Two officers arrested in killing of supporters of Uganda opposition leader

Uganda police have arrested two military officers in connection with the shooting of three opposition supporters, local news media reported Thursday.

It was not immediately clear what charges will be filed the arrested men, identified by the independent Daily Monitor as Lt. Ramathan Magala, the commanding officer of the Reserve Force in Mengo region, and Warrant Officer Ibrahim Sebbi.

The victims were killed in Bulange, seat of the traditional kingdom of Buganda, after waiting to meet opposition leader Kizza Besigye, who was holding talks with the prime minister and other leaders of the kingdom before presidential elections set for Feb. 23.

The Daily Monitor, whose reporter witnessed the incident, said Magala provoked a crowd of Besigye's supporters when he tried to drive through them in a vehicle that had a campaign poster of President Yoweri Museveni.

"As he tried to reverse, someone threw a stone at his car. He got out and first fired in the air before then firing into the crowd," said police chief Maj. Gen. Kale Kayihura in an interview with the independent K-FM radio station.

"I must say the police force which I head is very sorry for the violence applied against Besigye's supporters," Kayihura said, reports the AP.

I.L.