June 8, 2023

The Kwango Provincial Youth Council and the affiliation Younger Visionaries and Genuine of Grand Bandundu (JAVIBA) requested, this Wednesday, Could 17, the President of the Republic, Felix-Antoine Tshisekedi, to erect a memorial of these killed, in Could 1997, when the Alliance of Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Congo (AFDL) entered Larger Bandundu.

These youth organizations recall that 26 years in the past, AFDL troops, heading in the direction of Kinshasa to deliver down the Mobutu regime, encountered sturdy resistance from the Zairian Armed Forces (FAZ) notably in Kenge (Kwango) , the final army lock earlier than taking the capital. These fights resulted within the loss of life of lots of of civilians.

For Faustin Kinkufi, president of JAVIBA, these victims deserve a memorial worthy of the identify.

He calls on Felix Tshisekedi to materialize the dedication made by his predecessors to honor these individuals.


Entry of the AFDL into Kenge (Chronology of occasions)

In a last-ditch effort to cease the AFDL’s progress in the direction of Kinshasa, the Zairian common workers despatched to Kenge, about 200 kilometers from Kinshasa, troops from the Particular Presidential Division (DSP), in addition to Angolan components from UNITA, and mercenaries of varied nationalities.

Already on Could 4, these troops posed as components of the AFDL in an effort to check the loyalty of the inhabitants to President Mobutu’s regime, native sources point out.

Anxious to see the AFDL arrive, some residents of Kenge had already destroyed symbols of state authority and ready banners welcoming the AFDL troopers.

On Could 5, clashes with heavy weapons came about within the city heart of Kenge, killing at the least 65 individuals, together with kids, reported surviving witnesses.

Throughout the battle, the medical personnel weren’t duly protected. Sources point out that 10 Purple Cross personnel making an attempt to assist the injured had been killed.

From Could 6 and through the days that adopted, FAZ/DSP troopers fleeing in the direction of Kinshasa killed a number of dozen civilians, dedicated rapes and looting, set hearth to a number of homes situated alongside the highway between Kenge and Kinshasa, can we learn within the Mapping report of the UN specialists.

Mass graves are nonetheless indicated, notably within the villages of Moyen-ville, Tiabakweno, Ndjili, Mbinda and Mbinda Nseke. In line with the Mapping report, in complete, the battle of Kenge left greater than 200 civilians lifeless and greater than 100 wounded.

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