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Several Americans Detained in African Country Following Suspected Role in Fatal Coup, Resulting in 3 Deaths

Violence erupted in the Democratic Republic of Congo during‌ a failed coup, leading to⁤ the ‌death ‌of the alleged leader, Christian⁤ Malanga. The U.S.⁢ government, through Ambassador‌ Lucy Tamly, assured full cooperation with⁤ Congolese authorities. Reports indicated the involvement of three Americans in the incident, with one identified as Malanga’s son. The situation is under control as investigations continue.


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By Jack Davis May 19, 2024 at 4:06pm

Violence flared Sunday in the capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo as what officials are calling a coup attempt crumbled, leaving the purported leader of the attempt dead, according to reports.

Army spokesman Sylvain Ekenge said Christian Malanga, a Congolese politician based in the U.S., was killed after he led the attempted coup in the capital of Kinshasa.

About 50, including three Americans, were arrested and are being interrogated, Ekenge said, according to Reuters.

He said the coup was “nipped in the bud by Congolese defense and security forces (and) the situation is under control,” according to The Washington Post.

JUST IN: Three Americans are accused of being involved in a failed coup attempt in Congo that left multiple people dead.

According to the Democratic Republic of Congo military, they stopped an attempted coup near the presidential palace.

Among the 50 people who were involved… pic.twitter.com/MllFIQ0sRH

— Collin Rugg (@CollinRugg) May 19, 2024

U.S. Ambassador to the Congo Lucy Tamly pledged the Biden administration’s cooperation with the government.

“I am shocked by the events of this morning and very concerned by reports of American citizens allegedly involved. Please be assured that we will cooperate with the DRC authorities to the fullest extent as they investigate these criminal acts and hold accountable any U.S. citizen involved in criminal acts,” she wrote  in French in a post on X.

(Thanks to its history as a former Belgian colony, French is the official language of the central African country.)

Je suis choquée par les événements de ce matin et très préoccupée par les rapports faisant état de citoyens américains prétendument impliqués. Soyez assurés que nous coopérerons avec les autorités de la RDC dans toute la mesure du possible alors qu’elles enquêtent sur ces actes…

— Ambassadeur Lucy Tamlyn (@USAmbDRC) May 19, 2024

According to The New York Times, a video showed Malanga, with men in military uniform, some of whom bore U.S. flags on their uniforms.

“Felix, you’re out,” he said in the video, addressing DRC President Felix Tshisekedi. “We are coming for you.”

According to the BBC a video showed Malanga saying,  “We the military are tired, we cannot march together with Vital Kamerhe and President Félix Tshisekedi.”

Tshisekedi was unhurt.

🇨🇩 The DR Congo military foiled a “coup attempt” in the country!

An attempted coup took place this morning in the Democratic Republic of Congo, reports the country’s national television RTNC.

The attackers’ goal was to seize the Palace of the Nation and the residence of Deputy… pic.twitter.com/2Zzi9OMqXl

— Lord Bebo (@MyLordBebo) May 19, 2024

The names of the three Americans arrested were not officially released.

The Times said one individual pictured in a video of two men sitting on the ground surrounded by soldiers was Malanga’s son.

The Times reported that the passport of Benjamin Reuben Zalman-Polun, another American, was circulating on social media amid claims he was involved in the coup.

Zalman-Polun had previously been named as a cannabis entrepreneur who was part of a gold mining deal with Malanga, according to the Times.


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Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.

Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.
Jack can be reached at [email protected].

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