ZOMBO. The Uganda Peoples Defence Force (UPDF) soldiers on Saturday launched another operation to locate one of their colleagues.

The soldier whose identity was concealed went missing in the Friday's battle against some unknown armed group that raided an army detach in Oduk village, Abira West ward in Zombo town council.

The engagement also left 3 UPDF soldiers dead and 2 injured while at least 23 suspects were arrested and air lifted on Saturday morning to unknown destination.

Currently the death toll for the members of the unknown armed group stands at 12 but officials say the number may continue to rise as the locals resort to lynching some of the lost members of the armed group found wandering in their areas.

There were reports of at least 4 members of the armed group lynched by a mob in Jangokoro and Nyapea sub counties on Saturday morning.

Major Caesar Olweny, the 4th division army spokesperson said on Friday that the situation is under control and commended members of the community for their cooperation with the UPDF soldiers to bring sanity to the area.

"The security of the people is in the hands of the people themselves because no one will come from anywhere to secure anyplace unless the indigenous are willing to", he said.

He said they have launched another operation to find the missing soldier whom he suspects could be injured in the bush.

According to him, whatever happened is not a threat at all because the area has been secured and dominated by the UPDF soldiers within the shortest time possible.

"I want our people to continue collaborating with the UPDF soldiers and other security agencies to avert any threat that may in one way or the other undermine the peace of this country", he said.

Mr Andrew Kajoyingi, the Resident District Commissioner Zombo said on Friday that the attackers made away with 3 AK47 rifles during the raid.

He similarly called for calm as the UPDF takes control of the affected areas.

"Remain calm and cooperative because we are doing our part and there is no to worry because the situation is already under control", he said.

Mr Con Omwonya, the chairman Nyapea sub county where at least two suspects were lynched by the mob said there were some people who went missing from their community but only to be found dead in the battle.

"Our people are peace loving and we condemn this act because we have never been in such a scenario", he said.

Omwonya commended the UPDF and other security agencies for their quick response to the attack that according to him has left most people puzzled.

The attackers whose origin and motives have not been established to date are believed to have fled into the DRC while others are still at large after a two day offensive by the UPDF.

UPDF soldiersResidents look on as the UPDF soldiers launch another operation to find the missing soldier.