Cops arrest more than 120 protesters opposing Kabila’s rule
KINSHASA: Police have arrested over 120 critics of President Joseph Kabila, civil society activists and journalists amid a mounting political crisis in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
At least three people were injured after police fired on the protesters.
The arrests follow a brutal dispersal of peaceful protests held by activists demanding the publication of the electoral calendar for the presidency and calling for the holding of elections before the end of the year.
The skirmishes occurred in the major cities of Beni, Butembo, Bukavu, Goma, the capital Kinshasa, Lubumbashi and Mbandaka.
Among those detained were eight media representatives, including two members of the international press corps.
The journalists have been released following the intervention of the UN Mission in DRC (Monusco).
Maman Sidikou, special representative of the UN and head of Monusco, expressed concern at restrictions imposed on peaceful assembly and arrests of those seeking to express their political views.
He also called in politicians to refrain from raising tensions further.
Central Africa’s biggest country has been riven by strife after Kabila clung on to power at the expiry of his term last year. Elections set for last November were postponed, but must be held by the end of 2017. A deal reached in December bars Kabila from contesting. CAJ News