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DR Congo announces new cabinet after seven months

The Democratic Republic of Congo on Monday announced a new coalition government. It is being announced seven months after the inauguration of the new president Felix Tshisekedi. Prime Minister Sylvestre Ilunga told reporters that “The government is finally here. The president has signed the decree and we will begin work soon.” Felix Tshisekedi in January this year was sworn in as the new President of Congo. He succeeded Joseph Kabila in Congo’s first democratic and peaceful transfer of power. Felix Tshisekedi is the son of a late veteran opposition leader, Etienne…

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Will the world remain silent with Rwanda and Uganda in DR Congo again?

An interview with international criminal defense attorney and former law professor Peter Erlinder Ann Garrison While international attention is focused on the constitutional crisis in Burundi, Rwandan and Ugandan soldiers have again violated the territorial integrity of DR Congo by sending troops into the country. What are they up to? INTRODUCTION Rwandan and Ugandan troops have been reported in the Democratic Republic of Congo during the past two weeks, but reporting is scant and neither the U.S., the U.N. Security Council nor any other members of the international community have…

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Democratic Republic Congo Must Guarantee ‘Space’ for Opposition Ahead of Vote: UN

KINSHASA:  The United Nations on Sunday called on the Democratic Republic of Congo to respect its citizens’ civil liberties as the political climate has turned tense ahead of key elections next year. “Political space must be guaranteed, space for the opposition, space for civil society, for the defenders of human rights,” Martin Kobler, head of the UN peacekeeping mission MONUSCO in DRC, said in an interview with AFP. “It’s very important and we are in contact with the government” on these subjects, he added. Tensions have been rising in DR Congo…

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U.S. diplomat arrested with pro-democracy activists in Congo

Security forces in Democratic Republic of Congo arrested a U.S. diplomat along with pro-democracy activists, journalists and musicians on Sunday following a news conference in the capital Kinshasa, a government spokesman and witnesses said. The event was held by activists from Congo, Senegal and Burkina Faso at a cultural center and was attended by around 20 journalists and observers. Around a dozen soldiers, both in uniform and civilian clothes, entered the hall as the news conference finished and began making arrests, a Reuters witness said, adding that some attendees were assaulted during the…

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U.S. envoy urges Congo to set date for presidential election

By Aaron Ross KINSHASA (Reuters) – Democratic Republic of Congo should promptly set a date for a presidential election in 2016, a senior U.S. envoy said on Monday, increasing international pressure on President Joseph Kabila to step down at the polls next year. Last month, street protests killed 42 people and forced lawmakers to drop an electoral reform bill the opposition said was aimed at keeping Kabila in power. The attention has now shifted to the National Independent Electoral Commission (CENI) which has yet to set a date for the…

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Congo delays vote on electoral law, West urges revisions

Democratic Republic of Congo’s Senate has delayed until Friday a vote on changes to the electoral law after calls from Western powers to withdraw or alter the proposed bill, which has sparked days of violent protests. The new legislation calls for a census before elections due next year. President Joseph Kabila’s allies say the move is necessary to update voter lists, but critics say it is a ploy to allow him to remain in office beyond the period of his final term. The capital was largely quiet on Thursday but…

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DR Congo unrest: Catholic church backs protests

The Catholic Church in the Democratic Republic of Congo has thrown its weight behind protests against President Joseph Kabila extending his rule. It called on people to peacefully oppose his move to delay presidential elections until a census is held. At least 11 people have so far been been killed in the protests. It is the worst unrest in the capital, Kinshasa, since the riots which broke out after Mr Kabila won a second term in disputed elections in 2011. Mr Kabila, who first took power in 2001 following the…

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Congo-Kinshasa: Extending the FDLR Disarmament Deadline Will Only Prolong the Agony

This week all eyes were to be on the joint summit between the South African Development Community (SADC) and the International Conference on the Great Lakes (ICGLR) that was proposed by South African President Jacob Zuma earlier this month, but this event has now been cancelled, apparently at the behest of Angola, which currently holds the presidency of the ICGLR. The main item on the agenda was to be the FDLR (the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda) – the Rwandan Hutu rebel group which has been operating in…

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Tanzania: We won’t be ready to join any combined attack against the rebels because not all people in eastern DR Congo are FDLR rebels

“As a country (Tanzania) we won’t be ready to join any combined attack against the rebels because not all people in eastern DR Congo are FDLR rebels,” Bernard Membe, Tanzania’s Minister for Foreign Affairs told the media in Dar-es-Salaam Tanzania, hence rejecting, for some observers, the urgency of conducting military operations against Rwandan rebels and refugees based in Eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) . The declaration by the Tanzanian Foreign Affairs Minister comes after the Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete gave a cautious support on efforts to free Eastern…

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Ebola outbreak: DR Congo confirms first cases

Authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo say they have identified cases of Ebola in the country’s north-west. They are the first reported cases outside West Africa since the outbreak there began. So far 1,427 people have died from the virus – more than in any other Ebola outbreak. The number of cases now stands at 2,615. The speed and extent of the current outbreak has been “unprecedented”, according to the WHO. Source: bbc.com

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