The Bantu came and drove the Pygmies to the mountains, and they formed kingdoms to dominate the land. ALTERNATE NAMES FOR THE CONGO WAR. Its borders with Cabinda, Cameroons, and the Congo Free State were established by treaties over the next decade. The French Congo began at Brazzaville on 10 September 1880 as a protectorate over the Bateke people along the north bank of the Congo River, was formally established as the French Congo on 30 November 1882, and was confirmed at the Berlin Conference of 1884–85. History. The small country now known as the Republic of Congo was originally part of the Kingdom of the Kongo, and the Bakongo, Bateke and Dsanga were the main peoples in the area when the Portuguese arrived in the 15th century. Ending a long history of one-party Marxist rule, a specific agenda for this transition was laid out during Congo's national conference of 1991 and culminated in August 1992 with multi-party parliamentary and presidential elections. The history of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the 18th largest country in the world, is fraught with violence, conflict and exploitation. Three Bantu kingdoms gained domination in the country: the Kongo, the Loango, and the Teke. The country was first inhabited by the Pygmies during its pre-colonial area. From then on, as a Belgian colony, it was called the Belgian Congo and was under the rule of the elected Belgian government. Congo demands the extradition of Nkunda to Congo so he can stand trial. The Great Lakes War. Red lines indicate approximate zones of control in 2003 . A military court in Katanga finds Mai Mai commander Gédéon Kyungu Mutanga guilty of crimes against humanity following a 19-month trial, the longest war crimes trial in Congo's history. You are here: Countries / Congo. Rwanda refuses. In 1960 Belgium gave the Congo independence, but, with other western countries, continued to maintain economic power. Forever in chains: The tragic history of Congo The most blighted nation on earth goes to the polls this weekend - more in hope than expectation that stability and peace might result. In 1908, the Belgian parliament took over the Free State from the king. The Belgian Congo is often cited as one of the most brutal and exploitative colonial regimes in modern history. The Congo War (1998-Present) Map of the Congo War circa 2003. A chronology of key events in the history of the Democratic Republic of Congo, from the 1200s to the present BELLIGERENTS OF THE CONGO WAR: Congo Government (President Laurent Kabila), Angola, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Chad. One excuse was the Cold War. The Belgian Congo (1908–1960) – Colonialism, Condescension and More Extraction. Africa's First World War . In 1961 Patrice Lumumba, the Prime Minister in the Congo's first elected government, was seized, tortured, and murdered by a Colonel named Joseph Mobuto. 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