The Congolese army says it foiled a coup attempt. An opposition figure living in exile threatens the president

Kinshasa, Congo (AFP) – Congo The Congolese army announced that it had thwarted a coup attempt early Sunday morning and arrested its perpetrators, including a number of foreigners, following attacks on the presidential palace and the residence of a close ally of the Democratic Republic of Congo. president Killing three people in the capital, Kinshasa.

Initially, local media identified the armed men as Congolese soldiers, but then reported that they were linked to self-imposed exiles. opposition The character is Christian Malanga, who later posted a video on Facebook threatening President Felix Tshisekedi.

Malanga was killed at the presidential palace after he resisted arrest by guards, Congolese army spokesman Brig. Gen. Sylvain Ekeng told the Associated Press.

It was Tshisekedi He was re-elected president In December, in a chaotic vote amid calls from the opposition to cancel the vote due to what they said was a lack of transparency. The Central African country has seen similar trends of disputed elections in the past.

Ekeng told state television on Sunday that the attempt Atypical rule “It has been nipped in the bud by the Congolese defense and security forces (and) the situation is under control.” The perpetrators included three Americans, including Malanga’s son, Ekeng later told the AP.

This also came amid a crisis rocking Tshisekedi’s ruling party over parliamentary leadership elections, which were supposed to be held on Saturday but were postponed.

On Sunday, there were reports of clashes between men in military uniform and guards of Vitale Kamerhe, a federal lawmaker and candidate for president of the Congolese National Assembly, at his residence in Kinshasa, about 2 kilometers (1.2 miles) from the presidential palace and where some people were present. Embassies are also located.

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Kamerhe’s guards stopped the gunmen, said Michel Motu Muhima, the politician’s spokesperson on the social media platform

Video footage from the area appeared to show military trucks and heavily armed men walking through deserted streets in the neighborhood, while the army said the situation was under control.

Meanwhile, the self-exiled Malanga appeared in a live video at the presidential palace surrounded by several people in military uniform and said: “Felix, you’re out. We’re coming for you.”

On its website, the opposition leader’s group – the United Congolese Party – is described as “a grassroots platform that unites the Congolese diaspora around the world in opposition to the current Congolese dictatorship.”

Tshisekedi He has not yet addressed the public regarding Sunday’s events.

On Friday, he met with representatives and leaders of the ruling Holy Nation Union coalition in an attempt to resolve the crisis afflicting his party, which dominates the National Assembly. He said that he “will not hesitate to dissolve the National Assembly and send everyone to new elections if these bad practices continue.”

The US Embassy in Congo issued a security alert on Sunday, urging caution after “reports of gunfire.”

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Asadu reported from Abuja, Nigeria. Associated Press writers Ruth Alunga in Goma, Congo and Sam Mednick in Tel Aviv contributed.

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