Pro-autonomy protesters killed in Angola
Angolan security forces killed more than 10 people on Jan. 30 as they protested over living conditions in the diamond-rich town of Cafunfo, in northeastern Lunda Norte province. The demonstration was organized by the Lunda-Tchokwé Protectorate Movement, part of its push for autonomy for a region whose diamond wealth has long lined the pockets of senior ruling party and military figures. The group denied allegations by the security forces that the protesters were armed secessionists who had attempted to break into the police station.
Human Rights Watch, which interviewed survivors, said the demonstrators had gathered to demand better public services, including water and electricity, but had been fired upon by the police. A graphic video circulating on social media showed several bodies on a road, and one police officer stepping on the head of a severely wounded man. Amnesty International said the authorities have continued to hunt down survivors, and OMUNGA, a local NGO, alleged many activists remain unaccounted for. Both HRW and Amnesty have called for an independent inquiry.
From The New Humanitarian, Feb. 5