Monday, August 21, 2006

U.N. launches operation of free diplomats in Congo

United Nations peacekeepers Monday were attempting to resuce foreign diplomats trapped inside the home of a presidential candidate in Congo.

About 150 U.N. troops in 20 armored vehicles are trying to rescue foreign envoys from the home of Jean-Pierre Bemba, the candidate slated to face President Joseph Kabila in a runoff election.

A jeep carrying presidential guard troops patrols a street in central Kinshasa. Heavy gunfire targeted the villa of Jean-Pierre Bemba, who came second in the Democratic Republic of Congo's presidential election, as he met with foreign ambassadors overseeing the country's transition to democracy, diplomatic sources said.(AFP/Lionel Healing)
A jeep carrying presidential guard troops patrols a street in central Kinshasa. Heavy gunfire erupted outside the villa of Jean-Pierre Bemba, who is scheduled to face President Joseph Kabila in a runoff election. AFP/Lionel Healing photo via Yahoo News.

The runoff was announced Sunday when Kabila failed to win an outright majority.

There are conflicting reports as to the exact cause of fighting that erupted outside of the compound where Bemba's home is located.


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