Congo Watch: Breaking News: Gunfight pins down envoys in DRC capital

Monday, August 21, 2006

Breaking News: Gunfight pins down envoys in DRC capital

This is terrible: just in, from The Salon Breaking News: DRC:
Gunfight pins down envoys in Congo capital - Yahoo! News: "KINSHASA (Reuters) - Soldiers loyal to Congo's President Joseph Kabila opened fire on Monday around a house where U.N. officials and ambassadors were meeting his main political rival Jean-Pierre Bemba, witnesses said.

They said the presidential guard used at least one tank and heavy machine guns in a gunfight with Bemba's armed supporters around his riverside house.

The gunfire erupted for a second day, hours after electoral officials announced a presidential run-off vote between Kabila and Bemba following July 30 elections.

'The entire CIAT (foreign donors' group) is in Bemba's house having a meeting with him. Kabila's people are firing on the area,' a U.N. source, who asked not to be named, told Reuters.

A western diplomat said the ambassadors were pinned down in a safe room in the house.

A Reuters correspondent saw plumes of thick, black smoke rising from the area of the residence.

The shooting followed gunbattles on Sunday between soldiers loyal to Kabila and armed supporters of Bemba. The two are due to face off in a second-round vote on October 29."

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