At least eight civilians have been killed during a firefight between the army and rebels in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Gilbert Kambale, a civil society leader, told AFP news agency on Monday that rebels from the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) attacked the town of Beni in North Kivu overnight, with eight civilians, a soldier, and an ADF fighter shot dead.

Mak Hazukay, the DRC army’s spokesman, said the civilians were killed in the crossfire between the army and the rebels.

“The armed forces of the DRC intercepted the ADF and in the exchanges of fire civilians and soldiers were killed,” Hazukay said.