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D.R. Congo: Post Election Violence


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D.R. Congo: Post Election Violence

  1. 1. Post Election Violence And Stabilization In Western DRC
  2. 2. The city center and downtown of Kinshasa have all traits of a major city (paved roads, skyscrapers), while many of its suburbs are sprawling areas of poverty that lack running water and electricity.
  3. 3. Clashed broke out Kinshasa following the refusal of supporters of opposition leader Jean-Pierre Bemba to accept defeat the DRC’s presidential elections. Violence reached its peak at the end of March 2007, when Bemba’s security forces refused to disarm and join the regular Congolese army.
  4. 4. Indian and Bangladeshi FPUs took advantage of Kinshasa’s urban infrastructure and utilized their Armored Personnel Carriers to evacuat dignitaries and regular citizens of Kinshasa, away from conflict zones throughout the city. A Bangladeshi police officer helps rush injured civilians to a first aid post after clashes in the Congolese capital Kinshasa, 22 March 2007. (UN Photo by Martine Perret) Source: UN Police magazine June 2007.
  5. 5. The Bas-Congo province lies west of Kinshasa and its capital Matadi is the main seaport of the DRC. Matadi and the area around it, are home to the Bundu dia Congo (BDK). The BDK is both a political and religious movement that has advocated for separation from the DRC and a return to pre-colonial borders and traditional religious practices. The UN has responded to civil unrest in BDK strongholds both in 2007 and 2008. In 2007 35 UN police personnel deployed to Matadi to protect UN assets after two UN vehicles were destroyed during riots by BDK supporters who were upset with the results of the provisional election. In March 2008 the Congolese government launched a police offensive against the BDK. The unrest throughout Bas-Congo prompted MONUC to deploy a special task force of military observers and a Bangladeshi FPU, to protect UN installations and stabilize the province.
  6. 6. Matadi, has few paved roads, and its population is hostile to government authority. The FPU conducted foot patrols due to the lack of paved roads for vehicles and to interact and build the trust of the local population.