Tag: President Joseph Kabila
As I write this, on Jan. 8, Congolese are on edge, fearing fraudulent presidential election results and state violence to suppress mass protest. In nearby Gabon, U.S. combat troops are poised to cross borders and invade to protect U.S. citizens and interests as needed. Are they there to make sure that Joseph Kabila, the president they installed and kept in power for 18 years, cedes power to former Exxon-Mobil executive Martin Fayula, their new horse to ride? That’s just my best guess.
On Feb. 12, 2018, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees reported that there were 4.49 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) in the Democratic Republic of Congo and 630,500 refugees in neighboring countries. The IDP population had nearly doubled in the previous year alone, mainly as a result of clashes and armed attacks. This week I spoke to Swiss Congolese historian and activist Bénédicte Kumbi Ndjoko about recent developments in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
The Congo crisis is now one of the greatest humanitarian emergencies in the world and the most underreported. An average of 5,500 people a day flee violence and insecurity, even more than in Iraq, Syria, and Yemen. Unlike Iraq, Syria, and Yemen, however, the Congo wars are undeclared and there’s no front line. There are instead many wars over many concentrations of resource wealth in this immensely resource-rich country, especially in the eastern provinces.
On Nov. 14, CNN shocked the world with its video news report of Black African migrants being sold into slavery in Libya. Eight days later the Rwandan government issued a press release headlined “Rwanda’s door is open for migrants held captive in Libya.” Rwandan President Paul Kagame is grandstanding as Papa Africa on the world stage, but nothing could be further from the truth or more preposterous than his proposal. Here are four reasons why.
One of the most devastating U.S. interventions was the overthrow of the democratically elected leader of the Congo, Prime Minister Patrice Emery Lumumba, in 1960. That overthrow has been devastating for the Congolese people, because not only did the U.S. overthrow and assassinate the democratically elected leader, but they also imposed a dictatorship on the Congolese people for over three decades, and it has crushed and destroyed the country and the people.
On Sept. 19, 2016, widespread protests took place across the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The Congolese population sent a clear message to President Joseph Kabila that he had only 90 days left to vacate the presidency because his last of two presidential terms expires on Dec. 19, 2016. President Joseph Kabila has made it clear to the Congolese people that he is bent on holding onto power by any means necessary even if it means gunning down dozens of unarmed protesters in the streets of Kinshasa.
Beni Territory is a vivid example of the phrase, “Everybody wants a piece of Congo.” Beni Territory is rich in oil, timber, gold, diamonds, wolfram, coltan and cassiterite. Now the people of Beni are being massacred for their land and its riches. KPFA’s Ann Garrison filed this report after speaking to a Congolese human rights defender and author of “Congolese Genocides from Leopold II to Paul Kagame,” Boniface Musavuli.
Which presidents will remain in power in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and its neighbors, Rwanda, Uganda, Burundi and the Republic of the Congo? In Burundi, Rwanda’s neighbor and another of the Democratic Republic of the Congo’s neighbors to the east, President Nkurunziza claimed the right to be elected twice by universal suffrage and won the election, as Rwanda’s President Kagame did in 2010 and DR Congo’s President Kabila did in 2011, and that right was confirmed by Burundi’s highest court.
A widely feared and anticipated military attack by U.N. and Congolese troops on the FDLR has not materialized, despite U.N. Special Envoy Russ Feingold’s repeated urgings. Instead, this week, the people of the Democratic Republic of Congo rose up in the streets to demand that their Parliament not pass legislation allowing Congolese President Joseph Kabila to extend his stay in office beyond constitutional term limits. KPFA’s Ann Garrison has the story.
The dominant challenge facing Congolese people is the lengths to which President Joseph Kabila will go to maintain a stranglehold on power. This unresolved question represents the greatest threat to peace and stability in the Democratic Republic of Congo. It will continue to dominate the political landscape through 2016, when Kabila is Constitutionally mandated to leave office.
Friends of the Congo’s Executive Director Maurice Carney told KPFA that the U.N. Combat Intervention Brigade is really just the U.S., U.K., and other Western powers’ excuse for continuing to support African dictators – Rwanda’s Paul Kagame, Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni and Congo’s Joseph Kabila. All three, he says, collaborate with foreign interests to drain Congo of its vast resource wealth.
The deadly conflict in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo continues, as leaders of Uganda, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Rwandan and Ugandan M23 militia fighting in Congo gather in Uganda’s capital for peace talks, which members of the Congolese political opposition are boycotting.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo is in political crisis. The Independent National Electoral Commission announced that incumbent President Joseph Kabila is the winner, with 49 percent of the vote. But his leading challenger, Étienne Tshisekedi, rejected the results and declared that he now considers himself the nation’s president.
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee meets today on the election crisis in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. If your senator is a member, call him or her to demand that the U.S. government does not recognize the current election results published by the Congolese electoral commission in light of the Carter Center’s report about the irregularities during the electoral process.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo is in political crisis. After an unfair, fraudulent and violent election, the National Electoral Commission, stacked with supporters of incumbent President Joseph Kabila, has announced Kabila is the winner. Leading challenger Étienne Tshisekedi has declared himself the winner.
If the International Criminal Court and ICC Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo were committed to international justice, they would issue an arrest warrant for sitting Congolese President Joseph Kabila. But the Western powers that control the ICC have been expected to do whatever it takes to keep Kabila in power.
Why are the international community and U.N. not calling out irregularities in the elections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo? Why are they pretending to ignore this election in the world’s most resource rich nation, with the world’s lowest standard of living and the highest death toll due to armed conflict since World War II?
Congolese youth are not going to give up. They’re fighting day and night, educating their peers, their communities and mobilizing throughout the country to bring about change, whether it comes today or tomorrow. They’re clear that they have to be organized to protect their interests, and no one, no one, can protect their interests like they can.
Are the so-called rebels furthering the aims of heads of state by shattering communities in eastern Congo, driving people into refugee camps and thus separating them from the vast resources that corporations and the major world powers are so determined to control?
With the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) engulfed in bloodshed and terrorism due to the secretive occupation and expansion by the Rwandan regime of Paul Kagame, Congo’s President Joseph Kabila has reportedly requested an immediate emergency military intervention from Belgium to crush a growing rebellion sparked by resistance forces in the far Western Congo.