Police killed two rioters in poll violence on Sunday as the Democratic Republic of Congo voted in a presidential run-off intended to end decades of war and pillage that have left the country devastated despite its mineral riches. The governor of the northerly Equateur province, Yves Mobando, told Reuters: ''Two people were killed when the police opened fire to disperse the crowds.''
Whoever wins the Democratic Republic of Congo's presidential run-off on Sunday will take charge one of the most mineral-rich countries in Africa but also inherit a volatile cocktail of insecurity and social collapse. The victor faces the daunting challenge of restoring basic social services and reining in thousands of gunmen still outside the government's control.
Gunbattles shook the Democratic Republic of Congo's capital Kinshasa for a third day on Tuesday as the United Nations and foreign leaders pressed President Joseph Kabila and an election rival to halt fighting between their feuding forces.
Congolese President Joseph Kabila's guards fought gun battles with forces loyal to election challenger Jean-Pierre Bemba in the capital Kinshasa on Sunday, as poll results showed the two would have to enter a run-off. Kabila, with 44,81%, and Bemba with 20,03% of votes from the historic July 30 election, will face each other in a second round.
International officials on Monday hailed Democratic Republic of Congo's (DRC) landmark elections at the weekend as an example to Africa and called on presidential candidates to accept the results. ''This has made the DRC an example for African elections,'' former Mozambique president Joaquim Chissano said.
Millions of Congolese voted enthusiastically in their first free elections in over 40 years on Sunday, hoping to end years of war, corruption and chaos that have brought the mineral-rich African giant to its knees. United Nations officials and foreign observers said turnout was high and voting was mostly orderly and peaceful at the landmark polls.
The vice-president of southern Sudan is clearly losing his patience. It is July 12 and Riek Machar has been camped out here in a remote jungle clearing for five days, waiting to meet the elusive leader of Uganda's notorious Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) -- self-proclaimed prophet and mystic Joseph Kony.
As government soldiers dozed in the abandoned market stalls and excited United Nations peacekeepers celebrated reaching the town of Tchei in the Democratic Republic of Congo, a handful of civilians squatted in a mud hut. The dozen or so -- those too old, young or ill to flee -- were being kept under close guard and were all that was left of the population of 10 000 who lived in Tchei before the attack.
When Justine Henin-Hardenne managed to beat Serena Williams in the French Open semifinal, the American was booed every time she questioned a decision - even when she was clearly in the right. And towards the end of the match every first serve she missed was greeted with loud cheers.