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Vol 41 No 16

Published 4th August 2000


Congo-Brazzaville

Now the economic battle

Despite all the killling, the government has to worry more about money than politics

Several hundred troops from the President's old ally, Angola, ensure his regime's security; the Congo of Denis Sassou-Nguesso Mark II is still far from salvation. The 1,300 staff of Marien Ngouabi University in Brazzaville have been striking in protest at their dismal conditions and pay. Thousands of refugees from Congo-Kinshasa strain the resources of the poor and isolated north. Relations with Kinshasa have got worse, since President Laurent-Désiré Kabila suspects Sassou-Nguesso may be sheltering Mobutist soldiers and may also have had connections with northern rebel leader Jean-Pierre Mbemba. In return, Brazzaville suspects that Kinshasa shelters many fighters from the opposition Ninja militias, mainly Bakongo people from the coastal regions of both countries

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