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Belgium returns the teeth of the independent hero Rumumba to the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo

A tooth, the only surviving body of the murdered Congolese independent hero Patrice Lumumba, arrives in Kinshasa on Monday and will rest later this week.

Nationalist politicians anti-colonial on June 30, 1960, when his native Central African country declared independence from Belgium and gave a fierce speech against racism. It became a symbol of principle.

However, the country’s first post-independence prime minister, Rumumba, capsized in September.

Photo: AFP

In January 1961, a separatist in southern Katanga and a Belgian mercenary executed him and two close supporters.

After he was killed, his body dissolved in acid, but Belgian police officers kept his teeth as trophies. In 2016, Belgian authorities confiscated relics from a man’s daughter.

Last Monday, Belgium finally returned to Rumumba’s family at a ceremony in Brussels.

Rumumba’s remains were then transferred to the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where he toured the country, including the southeastern part where he was killed.

On Monday, his teeth arrived in the capital for the final journey of the tour, in a casket covered with the Congolese flag.

President Felix Tshisekedi of the Democratic Republic of the Congo received the remains at Kinshasa International Airport and bowed in front of the casket.

Rumumba’s teeth will be resting at the ceremony tomorrow, on the 62nd anniversary of his independence from Belgium and his historic speech.

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https://www.taipeitimes.com/News/world/archives/2022/06/29/2003780805 Belgium returns the teeth of the independent hero Rumumba to the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo

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