For more than five decades, 10 million Congolese lost their lives due to the inhuman treatment they received from the Belgian King Leopold II.
The recent decision by the Belgian authorities to extend a hand of fellowship to the Democratic Republic of Congo has once more left the population of that country divided. While some believe the move is worth the trouble, others think the apology cannot be accepted without the Belgian authorities addressing some of the atrocities committed during colonial rule from the 19th to 20th centuries.
According to historical experts, it is estimated that over 10 million Congolese were killed between 1885 and 1960, when the Belgium King Leopold II ruled the Congo Free State as a personal chiefdom. Most of them due to famine and disease. History holds that King Leopold II while claiming to protect the “natives” from Arab slavers carved his own private colony out of 100km2 of Central African rainforest. But started horrific atrocities on the African people as he turned the colonised lands into a massive labour camp, and made a big fortune for himself from the harvest of wild rubber. The rubber harvest in Congo directly contributed to Belgium’s rising economic power. The fortune came not only from harvesting local sources but also from human capital in the country. He made Congolese people to work and live in brutal conditions with many women raped and tormented by colonial forces at the time.
Any person or community that opposed met their doom. The King did cut the hands and feets of people who resisted him, even the children and wives of the men who couldn’t meet their “quo...
- 11 août 2022 11:10
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- 11 août 2022 11:08
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