Ver Angola


More than a hundred detained in Lunda Sul province following riots

More than a hundred people were arrested this Sunday in Saurimo, capital of the province of Lunda Sul, when they tried to march to the city center and rebelled against the authorities who tried to stop them, according to the Ministry of the Interior.


The movement began at 5:30 am, with an undetermined number of men, women and children who left the Candembe neighborhood for the city center, disturbing public order, according to the provincial delegation of the Ministry of the Interior (Minint) in the statement.

According to the police, instructions were given for the march not to continue, but the protesters rose up "creating rebellion and riots, throwing stones, sticks, bottles and other blunt objects", breaking the windows of two patrol cars.

The protesters were eventually dispersed using tear gas and other non-lethal means, with 132 people arrested, of which 92 were aged between 18 and 78 and 45 women, aged between 19 and 58, with no injuries reported.

Minint "vehemently" condemned the behavior of some citizens who tried to "violently confront the forces of order" and called on the population to remain calm as the situation is under control.

Videos circulated on Facebook show images of riots and unrest in the streets of Saurimo, as well as gas grenades being fired during the police intervention.

The reasons for the march are not mentioned in the authorities' statement.

However, the riots may be linked to the self-styled "Sociological Legal Manifesto of the Lundês People", led by Jota Malakito, who defends the autonomy of the Lunda-Tchokwe region in Angola, and tried to promote an act of proclamation of the autonomy of this territory.

Images circulating on social media show the raising of a flag proclaiming independence, which was followed by an attempted march that was stopped by the police.

"The MPLA police, fully armed, invaded MJSPL delegations, with the aim of intimidating the raising of our old flag of the Lunda-Tchokwe State, here is the evidence of the armed means used against unarmed people. There were several injuries, arrests and home invasions", reads the MJSPL Facebook page.

Lunda Sul is one of the main diamond producing provinces, the second largest source of wealth in Angola.

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