DR Congo

Kinshasa (AFP) A general commanding military operations in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo was ambushed, army sources said on Friday, as rebels launched fresh attacks in the troubled region. A convoy that included General Philemon Yav, in charge of forces in the region, came under fire by the Yakutumba militia in Fizi district in South Kivu province late Thursday, a source said. At least one soldier was killed and three were injured. The attack came two days after gunmen in South Kivu abducted two members of the country’s powerful domesticRead More
Kinshasa (AFP) As demand for batteries drives a surge in the price of cobalt, the Democratic Republic of Congo is gearing up to overhaul its mining regulations to harvest more profit from the coveted metal. The global boom for smartphones and electric cars has pushed up the price of cobalt, a key ingredient in top-range batteries, to $75,000 (almost 63,000 euros) a tonne — an increase of 127 percent in one year. DR Congo is the world’s leading producer of cobalt, where authorities consider the previous mining code to favourRead More
Beni (DR Congo) (AFP) Three Democratic Republic of Congo soldiers died on Monday while repelling an attack in the eastern Beni region by ADF Ugandan Islamist rebels, who are suspected of murdering 14 UN peacekeepers last month. The army had on Saturday announced an offensive against the Allied Democratic Forces, one of a number of armed groups acting in North Kivu and South Kivu — the two provinces which border Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania. “The ADF attacked our position in Muzambay at 4:00 am (0200 GMT),” said army spokesmanRead More
Kananga (DR Congo) (AFP) Men armed with machetes killed four soldiers in an attack Sunday near the main Kananga airport in Kasai, an opposition stronghold in the south of the Democratic Republic of Congo, residents said as tensions returned to the restive region. The assailants attacked the soldiers as they were sleeping in their tent, the sources told AFP, adding that they then set fire to the tent. “An army vehicle arrived not far from my house and I saw four bodies of soldiers that they were transporting as wellRead More
Kinshasa (AFP) Police fired warning shots on Friday to disperse a crowd gathered in front of Kinshasa cathedral after a mass by prominent government critic Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo, an AFP journalist said. Armed officers arrived at the gates of the cathedral as worshippers were leaving a service to commemorate the victims of a crackdown on marches on New Year’s Eve that demanded the removal of DR Congo’s president, Joseph Kabila. A young man who was slightly wounded in the face told AFP he had been hit by the shots. HeRead More
Kinshasa (AFP) Supported by throngs of worshippers and with western ambassadors in attendance, Catholic leaders in DR Congo hammered home a message of anger toward President Joseph Kabila on Friday at a mass to mourn victims of a crackdown. Police fired a couple of warning shots to disperse worshippers outside Kinshasa cathedral after the highly-charged mass, which was led by prominent government critic Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo, an AFP journalist reported. Police said they fired only teargas, and two people were slightly injured. Armed officers arrived at the cathedral gates asRead More
Kinshasa (AFP) A 78-year-old prelate is likely to play a key role this year in shaping the future of one of Africa’s most important and volatile states. The man in the spotlight is Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo, archbishop of Kinshasa and de-facto leader of the Democratic Republic of Congo’s powerful Catholic church. For decades, the cardinal has spoken out against the violence that has swept through parts of the sprawling country, including successive civil wars that killed millions. His outspokenness has now turned him into a rallying figure for protest againstRead More
Kinshasa (AFP) DR Congo’s electoral body trumpeted on Tuesday the arrival of the first voting machines from South Korea for long-delayed elections that the government has pledged to hold in December. The vote is supposed to bring about the belated departure of President Joseph Kabila, in power since 2001, who was supposed to step down last year but postponed the polls. But it remains unclear if the 45 million Congolese voters who registered in 2017 will finally get to choose a new president, deputies and elected representatives in the voteRead More
Kinshasa (AFP) Floods and mudslides in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s chaotic capital Kinshasa have caused cholera cases to rise over five-fold to more than 100 a week, medical charity MSF said Tuesday. “In past weeks we registered about 20 cases a week on average. At present, we have more than 100 each week,” said Jean Liyolongo from Medecins sans Frontieres. He said the spurt began in the first week of January in Africa’s third largest city which is home to about 10 million people. Floods and landslips last weekRead More
Kinshasa (AFP) DR Congo started two days of national mourning Monday for 48 people killed by floods and mudslides in the capital Kinshasa amid concerns of a cholera outbreak in the vast city of 10 million. The mid-week fatalities following torrential rain wreaked havoc on flimsy homes which were flattened by mudslides. “I am here to survey the damage first-hand,” said Prime Minister Bruno Tshibala, visiting the working-class districts of Bandal and Kitambo of the capital of Democratic Republic of Congo. He met a widow in her fifties who lostRead More