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DR Congo says EU sanctions against it ‘illegal’


AFP Photo/Gwenn Dubourthoumieu

AFP Photo/Gwenn Dubourthoumieu

DR Congo on Monday slammed as illegal a European Union decision to impose sanctions on seven of its top security officials for their role in deadly clashes with protesters.

“(These sanctions) are illegal because they are a sort of imperial law that is at odds with international law. The DRC, a non-European country, condemns them and intends to take action against them,” said government spokesman Lambert Mende.

More than 50 people died in the September protests against the rule of President Joseph Kabila and European Union foreign ministers had warned in October they would act if Kabila showed no sign of leaving office when his term ends on December 19.

Ministers decided “to impose restrictive measures against the seven individuals who hold positions of authority in the chain of command over the Congolese security forces which have exercised a disproportionate use of force,” a statement said.

The steps include travel bans and asset freezes.

The seven include two Kabila allies — army commander Major General Gabriel Amisi Kumba and former inspector of police General John Numbi — who have previously been sanctioned by the United States.

The EU also listed Ilunga Kampete, head of the president’s Republican Guard; Ferdinand Ilunga Luyoyo, commander of the anti-riot squad; Celestin Kanyama, chief of the national police; Roger Kibelisa, in charge of the internal security services and Delphin Kaimbi, alias Kahimbi, who ran the military intelligence arm.

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DR CongoEUJoseph Kabila
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