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Congo suspends police chief for activist's death

June 6, 2010

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KINSHASA, Congo—Congo's national security official says the head of police has been suspended to allow a deeper investigation into the death last week of a leading Congolese human rights activist.

Lumanu Mulenda said Sunday that the council of defense, chaired by the president, decided late Saturday to suspend Gen. John Numbi, the senior police official who had reportedly met with the rights activist before his death.

The body of Floribert Chebeya Bahizire, head of Voix des Sans Voix, or Voice of the Voiceless, was found in his car Wednesday in a suburb of Congo's capital. The rights group, one of the largest in Congo, said he appeared to have been strangled.

Several police were arrested Saturday in connection to the death.

International rights organizations have called for independent investigations.

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