Congo police arrest dozens at banned protest rallies

2017-04-11 19:34
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Kinshasa - Police have detained several dozen people accused of violating a banon protests against DR Congo President Joseph Kabila, police sources say.

"Police have arrested and detained 34 people in Kinshasa," said national police spokesperson Pierre-Rombaut Mwanamputu.

"Some wanted to breach the ban on a march and others were preparing acts of vandalism".

Mwanamputu said he had no details of arrests in other parts of the vast country, where there is anger to Kabila remaining in office beyond the end of his mandate in December 2016.

Ahead of polls

The call by Democratic Republic of Congo's main opposition party for nationwide protests appeared to have been ignored in Kinshasa, however, where people stayed home fearing violence after the authorities banned the rallies.

The opposition is seeking to pressure Kabila, who has ruled since 2001, to implement a power-sharing deal brokered by the Catholic church to avert a crisis, by holding elections late this year.

Under the accord, Kabila agreed to share power ahead of the polls with a prime minister from the opposition.

But last week he named as premier a dissident member of the opposition, Bruno Tshibala. The opposition has rejected this choice as being contrary to the letter and the spirit of the power-sharing accord.

Read more on:    joseph kabila  |  dr congo  |  central africa  |  elections
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