Monday, August 21, 2006

Heavy Gunfire in Kinshasa: Jean Pierre Bemba's House in Flames and Surrounded by the GSSP

Friends of the Congo sources on the ground have reported that there is heavy gunfire in the Congo's capital, Kinshasa. It is believed that Jean Pierre Bemba's headquarters is under attack by Joseph Kabila's Special Presidential Security Guard or GSSP in French.

The Kabila camp was fully expecting to carry the elections in the first round. Although, Kabila made a conciliatory broadcast on Sunday night, it is well known that his camp is extraordinarily disgruntled by the fact that there has to be a second round.

Reuters reported that according to a United Nations source the entire CIAT (foreign donors' group) is in Bemba's house having a meeting with him. Yet, Kabila's forces are launching heavy artillery at the house. BBC reports that both the head of the United Kingdom Envoy and the head of the UN Mission is trapped by gunfire.

Friends of Congo sources say the CIAT diplomats were at Bemba's house to investigate the shooting from the previous night and got caught in an attack by Kabila's Special Presidential Security Guard. Bemba's helicopter and house are in flames and his office is surrounded by Kabila's heavily armed GSSP.

We are all hopeful that calmer minds will prevail and the government will call off its fighters.


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