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ICC Chief Prosecutor in Kinshasa to Investigate Alleged Crimes Against Humanity

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The Chief Prosecutor for the International Criminal Court, Fatou Bensouda has arrived in Kinshasa since Tuesday to start building a case surrounding deadly violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Ms. Bensouda has planned meetings with Congolese government officials and members of the judicial body, with a press conference to hold on Thursday. Her visit follows a series of requests made to the ICC to look into possible crimes against humanity in the central African nation.

Back in January, a resolution passed in the European Parliament and the United Nations urged the ICC to probe allegations of crimes against humanity top have been committed in the region of Kasai.

The pressure group known as Congolese citizen movement had also asked the ICC to investigate the repression of peaceful demonstrations across the country.

Sixteen people have been shot and killed since December of last year, they were involved in 3 protest marches organized by the Catholic Church but were heavily repressed by security forces.

The protests have been geared toward forcing President Kabila to make a public statement, declaring his intent to step down.

Although his second and last term ended December 20, 2016, President Kabila has managed to cling to power ever since. Elections to choose his successor are scheduled for December 23, 2018.

For the first time since September 2016, the Opposition held a meeting last week. Protest rallies and political gatherings have been raided in the past.

Several activists of the group Fight for Change, a pro-democracy movement were apprehended on Tuesday as they staged protests in the eastern city of Goma. Fred Bauma and Rebecca Kavugho were among the detainees. The two leaders were later set free.

 

 

 

Neba Benson,

BaretaNews Foreign Correspondent/Analyst

 

 

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