Police, anti-Kabila protestors clash in Brussels: report

23rd October 2010, Comments 0 comments

Police and demonstrators opposed to President Joseph Kabila of the Democratic Republic of Congo clashed in Brussels Saturday during a protest over the death in jail of a Congolese dissident.

Protestors hurled stones at police, smashing a shop window, the domestic Belga news agency said, as the demonstrators -- estimated at 200 by police, 500 by organisers -- marched towards the US embassy and European Union offices.

The protest follows the October 14 refusal by the DR Congo to return to Belgium the body of a man who died after being jailed there for throwing a stone at the president's convoy.

A Belgian court had asked for the return of the body of Armand Tungulu, who lived in Belgium and was arrested for throwing a stone at Kabila's convoy on September 29.

Tungulu was found dead in his cell three days later.

Among the marchers, who claim he was slain, was his widow as well as Jean-Paul Moka, who has said he will run for president at the next elections.

Authorities in Kinshasha said preliminary investigations suggested Tungulu, 30, had committed suicide.

Rights groups said he had been beaten up by the president's bodyguards.

A Belgian court had demanded his body be repatriated to Belgium under a penalty of 25,000 euros (35,000 dollars) per day for any delay.

But Kinshasa government spokesman Lambert Mende rejected the court order as "totally inconvenient because it compromises the inquiry under way in the DR Congo on this case."

© 2010 AFP

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