Africa

3 detained after attacks on Indian businesses in DR Congo

After death of Congolese student in Indian police custody last week, Kinshasa riots start with rumors of 2nd death: Police

James Tasamba   | 13.08.2021
3 detained after attacks on Indian businesses in DR Congo

KIGALI, Rwanda

Police in the Democratic Republic of the Congo said on Friday that they have taken into custody three people following Thursday’s mob attacks on Indian businesses in the capital Kinshasa.

“Three people have been arrested in connection with Thursday’s mob attacks in which uncivilized people, mostly young men, looted Indian businesses on Kinshasa’s 9th Street. One vehicle was set on fire and three others stoned,” provincial police commissioner Sylvano Kasongo Kitenge told reporters.

“Some 40 bales of stolen clothing were recovered and returned to their owners.”

Several Indian businesses in Kinshasa were looted during protests sparked by the death last week of Joel Malu, a Congolese student who was in the custody of Indian police in southern Bangalore city.

Malu was arrested on suspicion of narcotics possession in Bangalore on Aug. 1, but he reportedly complained of chest pains and was taken to hospital, where he died the next day, provoking fights between demonstrators and baton-wielding officers.

Kitenge said the acts of violence were provoked by rumors maliciously circulated that a second Congolese national had been killed in India.

Assuring residents that police will protect them and their property, Kitenge said investigations had been launched to find those responsible for spreading the rumors.

The attacks come at the back of past complaints by African diplomats about racism against their citizens living in India.

In 2016, a Congolese man was reportedly beaten to death in New Delhi, India’s capital.

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