Congo + 1 more

Republic of Congo: IRIN News Briefs, 10 December

Reports of continued fighting
Despite a ceasefire signed between the government and some opposition militia forces last month, reports of fighting continue, humanitarian sources in Brazzaville said. It said two people were killed on the Brazzaville-Kinkala road when unidentified people shot at their truck, although a rebel ambush was ruled out.

Rwandan refugees resettled

The sources also said over 345 Rwandan refugees from Loukalela camp in the northern Likouala region were installed in two different villages. UNHCR plans to integrate a further 2,000 this month. ICRC has opened a new site for displaced people on the outskirts of Brazzaville, the sources added. There has reportedly been a marked increase in the numbers of displaced people arriving from the interior.

Four Europeans, Lissouba get jail terms

Exiled former president Pascal Lissouba and four Europeans have been sentenced to various jail terms on charges of plotting to destabilise the government, news organisations reported. A court in Brazzaville sentenced a Frenchman, described as the mastermind of the plot, to seven years and his compatriot to five years. An Italian and a Croatian each received a two-year jail term. Lissouba, tried in absentia, was sentenced to 20 years for ordering the plot, Reuters said. The four Europeans, who had sought refuge at the French embassy, were handed over to the Congolese government by embassy officials in March.

Cabinet adopts amnesty bill

The cabinet on Wednesday adopted an amnesty bill for "war-related crimes", referring to the country's civil wars from 1993-1999, Congolese radio reported. According to the bill, all combatants who withdraw from militia groups and lay down their weapons by the end of this year will benefit from the measure. However those who "misused" their positions will be excluded. Under the bill, victims of the wars can sue the culprits and claim damages, the radio reported.


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