Angola’s Expulsions of Congolese Migrants Take a Humanitarian and Diplomatic Toll

Angola’s Expulsions of Congolese Migrants Take a Humanitarian and Diplomatic Toll
People share rations of beans at a World Food Program distribution site in Congo’s troubled Kasai region, March 13, 2018 (DPA photo by Kate Bartlett via AP Images).

The United Nations is sounding the alarm over the large-scale and ongoing expulsion of migrants and refugees from Angola, which has triggered a humanitarian crisis along its border with the Democratic Republic of Congo. So far this month, nearly 330,000 people have been forcibly deported from Angola into the Congolese border regions of Kasai, Kasai Central and Kwango.

On Friday, Michelle Bachelet, the U.N.’s high commissioner for human rights, warned that the migrants face an “extremely precarious situation” and raised the prospect of renewed communal violence in an unstable region. Six people have already been confirmed dead, reportedly at the hands of security forces, and there are unverified reports of other killings, according to the United Nations. For an update on the situation, WPR recently spoke with Stephanie Wolters, a Central Africa analyst and head of the Conflict Prevention and Risk Analysis Program at the Institute for Security Studies.

The expulsions began during the first week of October, when armed men looted and pillaged a Congolese neighborhood in the town of Lucapa, where economic migrants work in the area’s rich diamond mines, many of which operate informally. The expulsions are reportedly part of an Angolan government push to assert greater control over its mining industry. But regardless of its aims, Wolters says the Angolan government’s methods raise a number of concerns.

Keep reading for free!

Get instant access to the rest of this article by submitting your email address below. You'll also get access to three articles of your choice each month and our free newsletter:

Or, Subscribe now to get full access.

Already a subscriber? Log in here .

What you’ll get with an All-Access subscription to World Politics Review:

A WPR subscription is like no other resource — it’s like having a personal curator and expert analyst of global affairs news. Subscribe now, and you’ll get:

  • Immediate and instant access to the full searchable library of tens of thousands of articles.
  • Daily articles with original analysis, written by leading topic experts, delivered to you every weekday.
  • Regular in-depth articles with deep dives into important issues and countries.
  • The Daily Review email, with our take on the day’s most important news, the latest WPR analysis, what’s on our radar, and more.
  • The Weekly Review email, with quick summaries of the week’s most important coverage, and what’s to come.
  • Completely ad-free reading.

And all of this is available to you when you subscribe today.