DRC police fire bullets, tear gas on anti-Kabila rally: AFP

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Kisangani - At least two people were wounded as police fired live bullets and tear gas on Sunday to break up a banned protest against Democratic Republic of Congo President Joseph Kabila in Kisangani, the country's third largest city, an AFP reporter said.

Hundreds starting marching after mass at the city's cathedral but were dispersed by security forces. The AFP journalist said at least two people suffered bullet injuries.

The church-backed protest against President Joseph Kabila's refusal to step down after his long expired mandate was banned by authorities.

It had been called by the Lay Coordination Committee (CLC), an organisation close to the church and an influential social and spiritual force.

Previous protests on New Year's Eve and January 21 saw a total of 15 people killed by security forces, according to tolls given by organisers and the United Nations. The government said just two people died in those protests.

Kabila was due to stand down from office in December 2016, ending his second elected term, but he has controversially stayed on under laws enabling him to retain power until his successor is elected.

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