Today, a few days after the brutal murder of Floribert Chebeya , Congo’s most prominent human rights activist, the country celebrated its 50 years of independence. Although endowed with vast reserves of gold, copper, cobalt and diamonds, Congo is still one of the world’s poorest nations. President Kabila who is ruling since 2006 was recently accused by the International Crisis Group as being authoritarian. In april Margot Wallstrom, the UN’s special representative on sexual violence in conflict, called Congo the “rape capital of the world.’ Today Amnesty international called the celebrations in murdering Congo hypocrite. King Albert II of Belgium and his wife Paola represented at the celebrations in Kinshasa the former colonial power, whose then monarch Leopold II annexed the vast African country in 1885 as his own personal property and is credited with its wholesale plundering. As a reaction on this royal visit Vlaams Belang (right wing Flemish party striving to Flemish independency) asked today in a press release to the Flemish parliament to take distance of the visit. The New Flemish Alliance of Bart De Wever already earlier expressed their antipathy for this visit. In Brussels this afternoon Congolese protesters were demonstrating against the celebrations waving the Flemish lion flag. Many Congolese living in Belgium are also seeing Walloon politicians as Louis Michel, André Flahaut, Didier Reynders and Armand De Decker as supportive for the corruption in Congo and the regime of Kabila. Last week Louis Michel of the Walloon liberals even called mass murderer King Leopold II of Belgium a hero.
Belgian nationalists organized this afternoon a large and free concert in front of the Royal Palace in an attempt to influence the results of the federal elections of next Sunday. De Standaard newspaper reports this evening that only a few thousands spectators gathered in Brussels to see these 40 artists perform.
A popular rights activist Floribert Chebeya has died mysteriously in Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo. He was found partially naked on the back seat of his vehicle with traces of female hair and condoms. He is reported to have received threats from the police in the past. At the end of this month, Belgium’s king Albert II will join the celebrations of this beggared and corrupt country for its golden anniversary of independence.