"They attacked Alanyi and Awaping villages in Abako sub-county of Lira on Thursday night in an orgy of killings, during which 14 people have been confirmed dead, but many others are still missing," Abako sub-county chairman Bernard Angol told AFP on Friday by telephone from Lira.

"So far, seven others have been confirmed dead in our
neighbouring Omoro county," Angol added.

Lira army spokesman Lieutenant Chris Magezi confirmed the
attack, but said scores were killed in Abako, while several others were killed in Omoro, without giving the actual figures of the dead.

Revenge

"We have done massive deployment and stepped up operations"

Chris Magezi
Lira army spokesman

"Our units are combing the areas to ascertain the numbers, but we have information that (LRA leader Joseph) Kony has given orders to his fighters to go on a killing spree to avenge our killing of his deputy Charles Tabuley last week," Magezi said, referring to a senior rebel commander the army killed in northern Uganda over a week ago.

Magezi said that the rebels were in the Lango region's two
districts of Lira and Apac and that this is where they broke up in smaller groups that have eluded the army as they move undetected.

"We have done massive deployment and stepped up operations in those areas to stop them from continuing with the killings," Magezi added.

The LRA has been fighting President Yoweri Museveni's secular government. It it is known for its brutality against northern
Uganda's civilian population, displacing some 1.2 million people.