"The confrontation began when the Burundian soldiers, who were pursuing rebels from the FNL (National Forces of Liberation) entered Congolese territory"
Five Burundi soldiers who crossed illegally into Congolese territory while chasing anti-government rebels were shot dead by border guards, an army spokesman said Friday.
"The confrontation began when the Burundian soldiers, who were pursuing rebels from the FNL (National Forces of Liberation) entered Congolese territory" after midnight on Wednesday, Major Dieudonne Kajibwami said.
"It was this overrunning of the border that led the FARDC (Congolese armed forces) to attack them, leading to five deaths on the Burundian side and none on ours," he said.
The incident took place just north of Lake Tanganyika, with the Burundian soldiers reaching a few dozen kilometres (miles) into the Democratic Republic of Congo, to the town of Kiliba.
The ethnic Hutu FNL, which participated in the 1993-2006 civil war in Burundi and oppose the government of President Pierre Nkurunziza, have long sought refuge when necessary inside DR Congo, in the border province of South Kivu.