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Investigation Into Attempted Coup in DRC Concluded, Report Says

© AP Photo / Samy Ntumba ShambuyiDRC coup Kinshasa May 2024
DRC coup Kinshasa May 2024 - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 02.06.2024
The attack on the presidential palace and the home of Deputy Prime Minister Vital Kamerhe in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) on May 19 resulted in six fatalities and dozens of arrests. Among the attackers were three individuals and the coup leader, who held US citizenship.
The trial of the participants and organizers of the attempted coup in the nation's capital will start in the coming days, according to local media outlet ACP, which cited sources within the DRC government.
The sources informed the agency that the matter would be heard by a military tribunal. The tribunal will also investigate incidents in which rebels were apprehended, bound, questioned, and, in some cases, killed without trial by the military. These incidents were recorded on camera, prompting protests from human rights activists.
On May 19, a shooting occurred near the residence of the Deputy Prime Minister and candidate for the post of speaker of the lower house of parliament of the DRC, Vital Kamerhe, as armed men tried to break into the residences of President Felix Tshisekedi and other government officials in an attempted coup. According to the witnesses, they were wearing uniforms with patches of one of the rebel groups, and speech was also heard in English and French. Social media users shared videos showing armed men purportedly at the presidential palace declaring their intention to overthrow President Tshisekedi.
According to the Congolese army spokesperson, the attackers were led by Christian Malanga, a vocal opponent of the government and a prominent member of the Congolese diaspora in the US. Among the four foreigners involved in a botched coup were US citizens Taylor Thompson (later identified by the US media as Tyler Thompson), Benjamin Reuben Zalman-Polun, convicted of marijuana trafficking, Christian Malanga and his son Marcel. Christian Malanga was killed during arrest.
Responding to reports that US citizens had participated in the coup attempt, Lucy Tamlyn, the US Ambassador to the DRC, stated that the US government was prepared to assist in investigating the event and prosecuting any US citizens involved.