DR Congo ex-warlord Jean-Pierre Bemba welcomed home

DR Congo opposition leader Jean-Pierre Bemba disembarks from a plane at N'djili International Airport in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo -1 August 2018 Symbol copyright Reuters Symbol caption Former Vice-President Jean-Pierre Bemba is popular in Kinshasa

Former Democratic Republic of Congo Vice-President Jean-Pierre Bemba has arrived house in the capital, Kinshasa, after ELEVEN years in exile and prison.

The ex-revolt chief had a warfare crimes conviction by means of the International Prison Court Docket overturned in June.

Crowds of his supporters in T-shirts, hats and scarves bearing his face met him on the airport.

He has declared his intention to contest the lengthy-not on time presidential election in December.

But President Joseph Kabila’s govt says he is not eligible on account of a corruption conviction.

Image copyright Getty Photographs Image caption His supporters want him to run for president on the MLC birthday party ticket

He misplaced presidential elections to Mr Kabila in 2006 and used to be accused of unleashing violence in the capital after the vote – fees he has at all times denied.

He used to be then accused of treason after his bodyguards and the army clashed in Kinshasa in March 2007, prompting him to escape the country.

His case on the Global Felony Court (ICC) related to crimes committed by way of his fighters, when he was once chief of a insurrection staff, dedicated within the neighbouring Valuable African Republic (CAR) from 2002 to 2003.

Symbol copyright Getty Images A smartly-hooked up businessman and the son of distinguished Congolese businessman Bemba Saolona 1998: Helped by Uganda to shape MLC insurrection group in Democratic Republic of Congo 2003: Becomes vice-president beneath peace deal 2006: Loses run-off election to President Joseph Kabila but will get so much votes in western DR Congo, together with Kinshasa 2007: Flees to Belgium after clashes in Kinshasa 2008: Arrested in Brussels and passed over to ICC 2010: Trial starts 2016: Found accountable of war crimes and crimes against humanity 2018: Conviction overturned on appeal.

Mr Bemba used to be arrested in Belgium in 2008. He was once accused of failing to prevent his riot forces from killing and raping folks in CAR when he led the MLC revolt group.

He was convicted in 2016, and sentenced to 18 years in prison after the first ICC trial to focus on sexual violence as a weapon of struggle.

Human rights group Amnesty World mentioned his acquittal in June was once a “massive blow” for the victims of a “horrifying campaign of rape and sexual violence”.

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