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Kinshasa resumes normalcy following presidential palace attack

Agencies   -  
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After the recent attack on the Palace of the Nation and the residence of Vital Kamerhe, Kinshasa, the capital city of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), has gradually returned to its usual routine. 

Despite the initial shockwaves, life has resumed with traffic flowing, offices reopening, and schools functioning normally. However, the aftermath of the attack has left a trail of investigations and security measures in its wake.

Images from the presidential palace on Sunday depicted a scene of chaos and violence, with bullet casings, bloodstains, and shattered glass littering the ground at the palace entrance. The attack, which was reportedly instigated by self-exiled opposition figure Christian Malanga, unfolded dramatically, with Malanga himself posting a threatening video on Facebook directed at President Felix Tshisekedi.

According to a spokesperson from the Congolese army, Malanga was killed at the presidential palace after resisting arrest by guards. The situation, however, was swiftly brought under control by defense and security forces, who thwarted what they described as an attempted coup. Details surrounding Malanga's death and the events leading up to the attack remain murky, with authorities providing limited information during a media briefing on Sunday.

Brigadier General Sylvain Ekenge, the Congolese army spokesperson, disclosed that a total of six individuals were killed during the incident, including three assailants and their leader, Christian Malanga. Around 50 perpetrators were apprehended, according to Ekenge, who emphasized that the attempted coup was effectively neutralized by Congolese defense and security forces.

Notably, among those arrested were three Americans, one of whom was identified as Malanga's son. Images circulated by the presidential palace depicted soldiers surrounding the suspected perpetrators, including the American nationals, who were seen sitting on the ground under guard. Additionally, footage showed several unidentified Congolese individuals suspected of involvement being rounded up by soldiers.

Despite the gravity of the situation, Deputy Prime Minister Peter Kazadi assured the public that no city-wide lockdown was imminent, signaling a commitment to maintaining normalcy and allowing citizens to continue their daily activities without undue restriction.