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The Congo is situated in west-central Africa astride the equator. It borders Gabon, Cameroon, the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the Angola exclave of Cabinda, with a short stretch of coast on the South Atlantic. Its area is nearly three times that of Pennsylvania. Most of the inland is tropical rain forest, drained by tributaries of the Congo River.
In precolonial times, the region now called the Republic of Congo was dominated by three kingdoms: Kongo (originating about 1000), the Loango (flourishing in the 17th century), and Tio. After the Portuguese located the Congo River in 1482, commerce was carried on with the tribes, especially the slave trade.
The Frenchman Pierre Savorgnan de Brazza signed a treaty with Makoko, ruler of the Bateke people, in 1880, thus establishing French control. It was first called French Congo, and after 1905 Middle Congo. With Gabon and Ubangi-Shari, it became the colony of French Equatorial Africa in 1910. Abuse of laborers led to public outcry against the French colonialists as well as rebellions among the Congolese, but the exploitation of the native workers continued until 1930. During World War II, the colony joined Chad in supporting the Free French cause against the Vichy government. The Congo proclaimed its independence without leaving the French Community in 1960, calling itself the Republic of Congo.
The Congo's second president, Alphonse Massemba-Débat, instituted a Marxist-Leninist government. In 1968, Maj. Marien Ngouabi overthrew him but kept the Congo on a Socialist course. He was sworn in for a second five-year term in 1975. A four-man commando squad assassinated Ngouabi on March 18, 1977. Col. Joachim Yhombi-Opango, army chief of staff, assumed the presidency on April 4. Yhombi-Opango resigned on Feb. 4, 1979, and was replaced by Col. Denis Sassou-Nguesso.
In July 1990, the leaders of the ruling party voted to end the one-party system. A national political conference, hailed as a model for sub-Saharan Africa, renounced Marxism in 1991 and scheduled the country's first free elections for 1992. Pascal Lissouba became the country's first democratically elected president.
Political and ethnic tensions intensified in 1993 after legislative elections, when the opposition's rejection of the results developed into violence. A peace agreement was signed between the government and the opposition in Aug. 1994. A four-month civil war (June 5–Oct. 15, 1997) devastated Brazzaville, the capital. Buttressed by military aid from Angola, former Marxist dictator Denis Sassou-Nguesso overthrew President Lissouba. In late 1999 a peace agreement was signed between Sassou-Nguesso, who comes from the north, and the rebels representing the populous south. The postwar period has been traumatic for the desperately poor country. In March 2002, President Sassou-Nguesso was reelected with 89.4% of the vote. His opponents were either barred from the country or withdrew from the election.
The so-called Ninja rebels continued to battle government forces, each attempting to gain or maintain control of the country's rich oil reserves and each seemingly unconcerned about the toll this new outbreak of violence took on civilians. In May 2003, the government and Ninja rebels signed an agreement to end hostilities.
Sassou-Nguesso was reelected to another 7-year term in July 2009. The opposition boycotted the election.
Sun, 24 Aug 2014 16:19:11 -0700
A Doren Air Congo Let L-410, registration 9Q-CXB performing a flight from Bukavu to Pangi (Democratic Republic Congo) with 2 passengers, 2 crew and 1500kg of cargo, had normally departed from Bukavu's Kavumu Airport at 13:42L (11:42Z) and left the ...
The Aviation Herald
Mon, 01 Sep 2014 03:18:45 -0700
“For DHL Express Sub Saharan Africa, the first half of 2014 was characterized by robust growth in the energy sector – particularly due to exploration companies mobilizing new campaigns in countries such as Cameroon, Congo and Gabon,” Brewer said.
Fri, 29 Aug 2014 04:15:00 -0700
The United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission (MONUSCO) in DR Congo flew the chimpanzees directly from Kinshasa to Bukavu in an Antonov An-26 cargo airplane that was returning from an aid mission. The U.N. support turned a 1,000-mile ...
Sat, 23 Aug 2014 17:27:16 -0700
A specially adapted Royal Air Force cargo plane picked up the male healthcare worker in Sierra Leone on Sunday after British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond authorized his repatriation for treatment. The Department of Health said the patient - whose ...
Sun, 31 Aug 2014 15:52:30 -0700
The Kigali meeting brought together transport ministers and related senior officials from the five countries of Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda. CCTTFA was ... “The Tanzania government 'Big Result Now' initiative aims ...
East African Business Week
Sun, 31 Aug 2014 15:52:30 -0700
Kigali — Last year half of Rwanda's imports passed through the Central Corridor route using Dar es Salaam port. Alexis Nzahabwanimana, the State Minister in charge of Transport was recently addressing participants of the Central Corridor Transit ...
East African Business Week
Fri, 08 Aug 2014 03:41:15 -0700
MUSKEGON, MI – Three more large cargo ships are set to arrive in the Port of Muskegon this month, according to Ed Hogan, vice president of operations for Port City Marine Services. All three "salties" will be carrying wind turbine parts bound for the ...
Sun, 31 Aug 2014 04:26:15 -0700
The HHL Congo arrived in the port of Muskegon on August 18, 2014 carrying wind turbine blades and motors. The ship's carrying ... The hub could use river barges, container ships, rail and air cargo to become a transportations hub. Different parts of ...