Ten Priests, 200 Protesters Arrested in DRC for Peaceful Protest

ICC Note

Ten Catholic Priests and over 200 protesters have been arrested in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo(DRC). They were carrying out a peaceful march through the capitol city against President Kabila, whose term was supposed to already be finished. The government says that they denied permission for the people to gather and protest. Six people were killed and more than 50 injured by government forces as they attempted to disperse the crowds. They used live ammunition and tear gas in this attempt. Now that the priests and protesters have been arrested, many human right’s advocates are concerned about their welfare. 

01/25/2018 DRC (ChristianTimes) At least 10 Roman Catholic priests and more than 200 civilians were arrested in the Democratic Republic of Congo on Sunday for taking part in demonstrations demanding the resignation of President Joseph Kabila.

The demonstrations, which began after Mass, had turned violent after police fired live bullets and tear gas in an effort to disperse the protesters.

Six people were killed, more than 100 were injured and two nuns were reported missing following the clashes. Among those who died was a 16-year-old girl who was standing by a church door.

Advocates for the arrested priests have expressed concern about their welfare. “We have registered the case of 10 priests who have been arrested, including Father Dieudonne Mukinayi of Saint Christophe Parish in Binza Ozone. He is detained in a residence of a government official alongside eight parishioners,” said Georges Kapiamba, the president of the Congolese Association for Access to Justice.

“According to information we have, they (continue) to be mistreated. Their clothes have been torn. Two nuns are missing, 257 demonstrators have been arrested and are being held in various cells in Kinshasa,” he added.

 

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