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Congo senate head hospitalised after Paris attack

By on January 3, 2012

The president of the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Senate has been admitted to a Paris hospital after being attacked in the French capital, the French Foreign Ministry said.

The ministry said on its website it was investigating the New Year’s Eve attack on Senate President Leon Kengo Wa Dondo while Kinshasa demanded an explanation from French authorities.

The ministry said he had been in Paris on a private visit and had not informed French authorities of his arrival. Security forces came to his aid as quickly as possible and he had been admitted to a hospital in the city, it added.

“An investigation is underway. We have passed this information on to the Congolese authorities, and remain in contact with them,” the ministry said. However, it did not comment on his condition or the possible motive of the attack.

Congo’s President Joseph Kabila was sworn in on December 20 for a new term following his victory in a disputed election.

Opposition leader Etienne Tshisekedi has denounced the vote as fraudulent and his supporters have staged violent protests against Kabila in Brussels and London.

Congolese Foreign Minister Alexis Thambwe Mwamba said the French ambassador in Kinshasa had been summoned by Congo’s Foreign Ministry to explain the incident.

“At government level, the situation is very serious,” he told France Info. “We consider that France has an obligation to ensure the safety of Congolese officials travelling to Paris, of our representatives and our diplomatic mission.”


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