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12 Nov 2017
78000 BCE First people arrive.
2000 BCE Bantu arrive, displace pygmies. Brought iron working and agriculture
1200 Rise of Kongo empire, centred in modern northern Angola and including extreme western Congo and territories round lakes Kisale and Upemba in central Katanga
1482 Portuguese navigator Diogo Cao becomes the first European to visit the Congo; establishes ties with king of Kongo.
1870 Belgian King Leopold II sets up a private venture to colonise Kongo.
1879 Leopold commissions Stanley to establish the king's authority in the Congo basin.
1884 European powers at the Conference of Berlin recognize Leopold’s claim to the Congo.
1885 King Leopold announces creation of The Free Congo State, under his control of course.
1891 Conquest of Katanga begins by the Belgians.
1908 Congo annexed by Belgian state amid protests over the killings and atrocities carried out under King Leopold's command.
1955 Belgian Professor Antoin van Bilsen publishes a "30-Year Plan" for granting the Congo increased self-government.
1960 Congo becomes independent with Patrice Lumumba as prime minister and Joseph Kasavubu as president.
1960 Lumumba removed as prime minister and arrested.
1965 Kasavubu ousted in a coup led by Joseph Mobutu.
1989 Zaire defaults on loans from Belgium, resulting in a cancellation of development programs and increased deterioration of the economy.
1997 Tutsi and other anti-Mobutu rebels, aided principally by Rwanda, capture the capital, Kinshasa; Zaire is renamed the Democratic Republic of Congo; Laurent-Desire Kabila installed as president.
1998 Rebels backed by Rwanda and Uganda rise up against Kabila and advance on Kinshasa. Zimbabwe, Namibia send troops to repel them. Angolan troops also side with Kabila. The rebels take control of much of the east of DR Congo.
1999 Rifts emerge between Congolese Liberation Movement (MLC) rebels supported by Uganda and Rally for Congolese Democracy (RCD) rebels backed by Rwanda.
1999 The six African countries involved in the war sign a ceasefire accord in Lusaka. The following month the MLC and RCD rebel groups sign the accord.
1600’s British, Dutch, Portuguese and French merchants engage in slave trade through Kongo intermediaries.
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