Republic of the Congo Civil War

Republic of the Congo Civil War
Congo (Brazzaville) Civil War
Date June 1997–December 1999
Location Republic of the Congo
Result Return to power of Denis Sassou Nguesso
Republic of the Congo Lissouba government (to October 1997)
Cocoye militia
Ninja militia
Nsiloulou militia
Mamba militia
Republic of the Congo Sassou Nguesso government (from October 1997)
Cobra militia
Rwandan Hutu militia
Flag of Angola.svg Angola
Commanders and leaders
Pascal Lissouba
Bernard Kolelas
Denis Sassou Nguesso
Casualties and losses
At least 13,929 battle related deaths between 1996 and 1999 [1]

From History of the Republic of the Congo

The Republic of the Congo Civil War, lasting from June 1997 to December 1999, was fought between partisans of two presidential candidates, which ended in an invasion of Angolan forces and installation of Denis Sassou Nguesso to power.[2] In Congo it is commonly known as the War of 5 June (Guerre du 5 juin).

Congo's democratic progress was derailed in 1997. As presidential elections scheduled for July 1997 approached, tensions mounted between the supporters of President Pascal Lissouba and former President Col. Denis Sassou Nguesso of the Congolese Labor Party (PCT). Sassou had ruled the country from 1979 to 1992, when the country was a Marxist-Leninist single-party state.[3]

When on June 5, President Lissouba's government forces surrounded Sassou's compound in Brazzaville, Sassou ordered his militia to resist. Thus began a 4-month conflict that destroyed or damaged much of the capital.[4] In early October 1997, Angolan troops invaded Congo on the side of Sassou. Most of Brazzaville fell to rebel and Angolan forces[5] on October 14, 1997, and Lissouba fled; within two days the capital was under the control of forces loyal to Sassou Nguesso and Pointe-Noire fell with little resistance.[6] Soon thereafter, Sassou declared himself President and named a 33-member government.

Alongside the political conflict between Lissouba and Sassou Nguesso, oil was considered a crucial factor in the war, and with French interests at stake, France was seen as backing Sassou Nguesso against Lissouba.[6]

In January 1998, the Sassou regime held a National Forum for Reconciliation to determine the nature and duration of the transition period. The Forum, tightly controlled by the government, decided elections should be held in about 3 years, elected a transition advisory legislature, and announced that a constitutional convention would finalize a draft constitution. However, the eruption in late 1998 of fighting between Sassou's government forces and an armed opposition disrupted the transitional return to democracy. This new violence also closed the economically vital Brazzaville–Pointe-Noire railroad; caused great destruction and loss of life in southern Brazzaville and in the Pool, Bouenza, and Niari regions; and displaced hundreds of thousands of persons. However, in November and December 1999, the government signed agreements with representatives of many, though not all, of the rebel groups. The December accord, mediated by President Omar Bongo of Gabon, called for follow-on, inclusive political negotiations between the government and the opposition.


  1. ^ Uppsala Conflict Data Program,, Accessed at 19:08 CET, 19/07/2010.
  2. ^ Global security, Accessed at 18:37 GMT 04/02/2010.
  3. ^ CIA factbook, at Accessed at 18:43 GMT 04/02/2010.
  4. ^, accessed at 18:45 GMT 04/02/2010
  5. ^ BBC news, as of 16:42 GMT, Friday, 29 January 2010.
  6. ^ a b Howard W. French, "Rebels, Backed by Angola, Take Brazzaville and Oil Port", The New York Times, October 16, 1997.

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Republic of the Congo — Not to be confused with the neighboring Democratic Republic of the Congo, formerly also known as the Republic of the Congo . For other uses, see Congo (disambiguation). Coordinates: 1°26′24″S 15°33′22″E /  …   Wikipedia

  • Congo Civil War — v · …   Wikipedia

  • Republic of the Congo (Léopoldville) — Infobox Former Country native name = République du Congo conventional long name = Republic of the Congo sup1; common name = Congo continent = Africa country = Congo era = Cold War year start = 1960 year end = 1965 date start = July 1 date end =… …   Wikipedia

  • Republic of the Congo presidential election, 2002 — A presidential election was held in the Republic of the Congo on 10 March 2002. This followed a civil war in 1997, which returned Denis Sassou Nguesso to power, and a subsequent transitional period, in which a new constitution was written and… …   Wikipedia

  • History of the Republic of the Congo — The History of the Republic of the Congo has been marked by French colonization, a transition to independence, Marxist Leninism, and the transition to a market oriented economy.Bantus and PygmiesThe earliest inhabitants of the region comprising… …   Wikipedia

  • Mining industry of the Democratic Republic of the Congo — The Democratic Republic of the Congo (abbreviated DR Congo or DRC), previously known as Zaire, is immensely rich in natural resources. However, mining activities have been closely linked to serious problems in the DRC. In September 2010, the… …   Wikipedia

  • Outline of the Democratic Republic of the Congo — …   Wikipedia

  • Outline of the Republic of the Congo — …   Wikipedia

  • Economy of the Republic of the Congo — The economy of the Republic of the Congo is a mixture of village agriculture and handicrafts, an industrial sector based largely on petroleum extraction, support services, and a government characterized by budget problems and overstaffing. The… …   Wikipedia

  • Culture of the Democratic Republic of the Congo — The culture of the Democratic Republic of the Congo reflects much of the diversity of its hundreds of ethnic groups and their differing ways of life throughout the country from the mouth of the River Congo on the coast, upriver through the… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.