Congo president pardons about 700 political prisoners
New Congo President Felix Tshisekedi has pardoned about 700 political prisoners who were jailed under his predecessor.
Tshisekedi signed the decree Wednesday, fulfilling a promise he made earlier this month to do so during his first 100 days in office.
Among those set for release is Firmin Yangambi, who was sentenced in 2009 to 20 years in prison on charges of being a threat to national security. Also being freed is Franck Diongo, an opposition figure who was sentenced to five years during the previous administration.
Tshisekedi was declared winner of the Dec. 30 election, leading Congo to its first peaceful transfer of power since independence from Belgium nearly 60 years ago. He succeeded Joseph Kabila, who governed the largely impoverished but mineral-rich central African country for 18 years.