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Vol 46 No 13

Published 24th June 2005


Congo-Kinshasa

Revolution day

Planned protests against postponing the elections test the regime's will

Militant supporters of veteran oppositionist Étienne Tshisekedi wa Malumba want to turn Independence Day on 30 June into Revolution Day. Their cause: outright opposition to the government's plan to postpone national elections and extend its tenure for another six months. Their argument is that the power-sharing regime under President Joseph Kabila lacks legitimacy and has no right to perpetuate itself. Many unpaid soldiers and unemployed urban youths would eagerly join a violent confrontation and pillage Kinshasa and the diamond city, Mbuji Mayi. Officials say the protests could spark more violence in the capital, where the United Nations has recently complained about the growth of 'gangsterism'.

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