South Kasai

South Kasai

Former Country
Former Country Less

South Kasai

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South Kasai was a secessionist region in the area of south central Republic of the Congo (LĂ©opoldville) during the early 1960s. The region sought independence in similar circumstances to neighboring State of Katanga during the political turmoil arising from the decolonization of Belgian Congo. Ethnic conflicts and political tensions between leaders of the central government and local leaders plagued the diamond-rich region.

Secession

On 14 June 1960, days before the colony was to become independent, officials declared the independence of Kasai (not of Congo) and proclaimed the Federal State of South Kasai. On 8 August 1960, the autonomous Mining State of South Kasai was proclaimed with its capital at Bakwanga (present-day Mbuji-Mayi). Albert Kalonji was named president of South Kasai and Joseph Ngalula was appointed head of government.

An assembly of notables invested Kalonji's father with the imperial title of Mulopwe on 12 April 1961. The new emperor immediately abdicated in favor of his son, who thereafter ruled South Kasai as Mulopwe (Emperor or King) Albert I Kalonji.On 16 July, Kalonji rejected royalty status, but retained the title of Mulopwe and changed his name to Albert I Kalonji Ditunga.

Reintegration

After a bloody four month military campaign during which thousands of civilians were massacred, troops of the Congolese central government re-conquered the region and arrested Kalonji on 30 December 1961, thus ending the South Kasai secession.

Kalonji attempted...
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