Kinshasa on the verge of…what exactly?

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Just a jot before a rather tumultuous but evenly promising 2013 should have ended in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), a series of mysterious events shatter the country’s capital Kinshasa, as well as a few major cities across its provinces, including Lubumbashi, Kindu, and other places to be confirmed. In Kinshasa, a lightly … Continue reading

Many hitches ahead for Congo’s new DDR. Time to get over them.

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On Boxing Day, the Congolese government has officially unpacked its new Disarmament, Demobilisation, and Reintegration (DDR) approach. A cabinet meeting presided by Prime Minister Matata Ponyo has adopted the “Plan Global de Déarmement, Démobilisation et Réinsertion”, nicknamed DDR III because it is the third nation-wide approach in that regard. It is worth a while to have … Continue reading

The Landscape of Armed Groups in eastern Congo

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(the cover photo of this article is a partial screenshot of the full map linked below) Two decades of armed conflict have created a complex topography in the eastern parts of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Current estimates by research institutions, multilateral and non-governmental organisations, and individual analysts indicate a myriad of over fifty … Continue reading

Genocide? Religious war? The inflationary use of buzzwords in CAR’s violent imbroglio

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For quite some time, I have been refraining from writing about the current conflicts in the Central African Republic. There is good reason for that, given I have never done actual fieldwork in this country. However, the recent escalation of violence has brought along a dangerous escalation of narratives, similar to that we know from … Continue reading

Amani Itakuya #25: Et si on faisait fin à la communauté internationale?

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Et si on faisait fin à la communauté internationale?  Arsene Tungali   Je me suis posée cette question à plusieurs reprises mais je n’y ai jamais réfléchi sérieusement avant aujourd’hui. La communauté internationale je la prends comme étant toute autre chose que le Congo et le Congolais, vivant sur notre sol ou à l’extérieur. Depuis … Continue reading

Amani Itakuya #24: Promoting the values of ubuntu and their implications on peacebuilding in the DRC

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Promoting the values of ubuntu and their implications on peacebuilding in the DRC Michel Bigwi [1]   The purpose of this article is discuss how Congolese can engage the discourses that promote the values of ubuntu (quality of human-ness) and the implications of these values on conflict prevention and resolution in DR Congo. In addition, the … Continue reading

Amani Itakuya #23: Colonial Remembering, Injured Bodies, and Current Humanitarianism

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Colonial Remembering, Injured Bodies, and Current Humanitarianism  Charlotte Mertens   Congolese colonial subjects narrate vivid memories of the grotesque and spectacular violence inflicted upon them by European ‘sadists’ during Leopold’s reign of the Congo Free State: “Soldiers made young men kill or rape their own mother and sisters” (Hochschild 1988:166). Colonial rememberings of 1953 mention … Continue reading