Americans, a Brit among those in DR Congo coup bid: army spokesman

A number of Americans and a British man were part of a group responsible for a coup attempt in DR Congo capital Kinshasa in the early Sunday, army spokesman General Sylvain Ekenge said.

The coup bid was led by Christian Malanga, a Congolese man who was a “naturalised American” and had been “definitively neutralised” -– killed — by the security forces, Ekenge said in a broadcast Sunday evening.

The attack took place outside the residence of Economy Minister Vital Kamerhe, in the Gombe area in the north of the capital, near the Palais de la Nation that houses President Felix Tshisekedi’s offices.

The group was made up of “several nationalities”, Ekenge said, adding that around 40 of the attackers had been arrested, and four — including Malanga — killed.

“We also have a naturalised British subject, the number two of the group,” the spokesman added. Malanga’s son, Marcel Malanga, was also among the attackers, he said.

Kamerhe and his family were not harmed in the attack but two police men looking after them were killed, said a source close to the minister.

The group had planned to attack the home of the new Prime Minister Judith Suminwa, and the residence of Defence Minister Jean-Pierre Bemba.

But they “could not identify the home” of Suminwa and had not been able to find Bemba at his residence.

After the attack at Kamerhe’s home the group then went to the Palais de la Nation, brandishing flags of Zaire, the name of the Democratic Republic of Congo under the dictator Mobutu Sese Seko, who was overthrown in 1997.